News & Commentary

Payments to Medicare Advantage plans nearly doubled between 2007 and 2017

Spending on Medicare Part A and Part B as covered by Medicare Advantage plans nearly doubled between 2007 and 2017, growing from 18% to 30%, reflecting, in part, the growing percentage of Medicare enrollees joining MA plans; in 2007, 19% of Medicare beneficiaries were in MA plans. Last year that proportion had grown to 33%. MA plans cover Part A (hospital inpatient services), Part B (doctor services and hospital outpatient services), and usually Part D (prescription drug services).

Medicare benefit payments for traditional Medicare and Medicare Advantage, 2007–2017

In $ billions:

Source: Kaiser Family Foundation Issue Brief, “The Facts on Medicare Spending and Financing,” June 2018

The Kaiser Family Foundation collected data from CMS and the Congressional Budget Office. The annual growth in Medicare spending overall is slowing down, according to the foundation. Between 2000 and 2010 spending was increasing at a clip of 9% per year. Between 2010 and 2017, the pace slowed to 4.5% per year.


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