Understanding the Changing Face of Medicare

    Improve Health Outcomes for An Aging Society

    Understanding the Changing Face of Medicare

    By 2030, the youngest baby boomers will be eligible for Medicare, swelling the estimated U.S. population aged 65 or older from just under 40 million today to 67 million. According to predictions using the Future Elderly Model — a unique, micro-simulation model developed by researchers at the Schaeffer Center in collaboration with other institutions — individuals will live longer but, for many, those extra years will come with increased disability.

    The 2030 The 2030 Medicare recipient will likely be a woman, disabled, and suffering from either one or a combination of chronic health conditions such as hypertension and diabetes.

    She’ll also have either taken some college courses or obtained a degree, and she will be a nonsmoker.

    These findings have significant implications policymakers as they grapple with how to manage the Medicare program, improve the health of the population, and treat chronic disease.


    Chronic Care: Getting its Complexity and Cost under Control
    June 15, 2016

    Strengthening Medicare for 2030
    June 15, 2015


    The Baby Boomers Will Shift the Health Status of the Medicare Population
    By: Stephanie Hedt
    A new study by Schaeffer Center researchers Etienne Gaudette, Bryan Tysinger, and Dana Goldman predicts significant changes in the average future Medicare recipient.

    Medicare’s Big Fat Problem, Fiscal and Otherwise
    By: Etienne Gaudette, Dana Goldman, Bryan Tysinger, Alwyn Cassil
    You can’t draw a straight line between growing Medicare spending and expanding American waistlines. But policymakers would be wise to keep both in mind as they ponder how to pay for the health care of 75-million-plus baby boomers who likely will live longer in worse health thanks to rising rates of chronic conditions, such as diabetes and heart disease, which in turn are fueled by growing obesity rates.



    Baby Boomers Set Another Trend: More Golden Years In Poorer Health
    It’d be one thing if there was an increase in life expectancy while maintaining health, but this is different. If you have more people that are disabled, it’s more costly, and we’re paying more because they’re living longer,” said Goldman in a Kaiser Health News article about the report. He added, “In some ways, we are victims of our success” in extending lives and preventing mortality, he wrote. ”We’ve done such a good job of preventing cardiovascular disease that now we have more cancer and Alzheimer’s.

    Health Matters Webinar: Will the Silver Tsunami Send Medicare into the Red?
    Dana Goldman joined Eugene Steuerle and Meghan Hoyer to discuss the health, demographic, and financial challenges facing Medicare and provide essential context for sorting through the rhetoric of the presidential campaigns.

    Medicare Seniors Will Live Longer But Sicker, Study Finds
    The average Medicare beneficiary in 2030 will be in worse physical shape than the average beneficiary of 2010, a new economic study shows.


    Gaudette, É., Tysinger, B., Cassil, A., & Goldman, D. P. (2015, December). Health and Health Care of Medicare Beneficiaries in 2030. In Forum for Health Economics and Policy (Vol. 18, No. 2, pp. 75-96).


    Etienne Gaudette
    Etienne Gaudette
    Research Assistant Professor,     
    USC School of Pharmacy

    Paul Ginsburg
    Paul Ginsburg
    Director, Leonard D. Schaeffer Initiative for Innovation in Health Policy
    Director of Public Policy, Schaeffer Center
    Professor of the Practice of Health Policy and Management, Sol Price School of Public Policy
    Leonard D. Schaeffer Chair, Center for Health Policy at Brookings

    Dana Goldman
    Dana Goldman
    Leonard D. Schaeffer Director's Chair, Schaeffer Center
    Distinguished Professor of Public Policy, Pharmacy, & Economics at School of Pharmacy & Sol Price School