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Thursday, December 2, 2010

What does the Report of the Fiscal Commission Co-Chairs Mean for Health Policy?

Lee Goldberg
Director of Health Policy, National Academy of Social Insurance

The Co-chairs of the President’s Commission presented a number of policy proposals aimed primarily at reducing the growth spending on Medicare and Medicaid. Given the size of the two programs, some of these changes may impact health care spending patterns in the private economy, but many will simply shift costs to other payers. Few, if any, proposals would address the underlying growing demand for services triggered by an aging population and a long term care system that relies on private savings.

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Posted on December 2, 2010  |  1 comment  |  Add your comment
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Friday, October 15, 2010

Why No Social Security COLA for 2011?

Ben Veghte
Income Security Research Associate, National Academy of Social Insurance

In January 2010, for the first time since 1975, when Social Security benefits were first indexed to the Consumer Price Index, Social Security benefits were not inflation-adjusted with a Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA), because the CPI-W had not increased from the third quarter of 2008 to that of 2009. Today, the Social Security Administration announced that 2011 will be the second consecutive year without a COLA.

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Posted on October 15, 2010  |  1 comment  |  Add your comment
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Thursday, August 5, 2010

Social Security and Budget Deficits: Don’t Lose Sight of the Facts

Janice Gregory
President, National Academy of Social Insurance (NASI)

With the release of the new Social Security Trustees annual report, we can expect to hear sharp debates on Social Security’s financial picture. We must ensure these discussions do not lose sight of some important facts. Despite concerns about Social Security’s long-term stability, the truth is that the program is in good financial shape and, with some sensible improvements, will continue to provide security to millions of American’s for generations to come

As in previous recessions, Social Security income and outgo today are performing as they were designed, as a counter-cyclical insurance program. That is, with more people out of work, contributions from wages decrease and more program participants retire sooner than they had planned. These facts are not a cause for alarm. Rather, they demonstrate the insurance function of Social Security and how critical it is to the economic security of American workers and their families.

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Wednesday, June 9, 2010

AmericaSpeaks: Our Budget, Our Economy

Janice Gregory
President, National Academy of Social Insurance (NASI)

You might have heard about AmericaSpeaks: Our Budget, Our Economy, a national non-partisan conversation on June 26, 2010 on the federal budget. Thousands of people will weigh the options available, including options that affect our national social insurance programs, and will voice their priorities in 19 facilitated discussions in cities that are linked from location to location by satellite and webcast.

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Posted on June 9, 2010  |  1 comment  |  Add your comment
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Wednesday, June 2, 2010

A Social Insurance Approach to the Problem of Paying for Long-Term Care

Bob Rosenblatt
Senior Fellow, NASI

The United States is going to try something new – a social insurance approach to the problem of paying for long-term services and supports. As more and more of the 76 million baby boomers move into their 60s and beyond, there will be a growing population of people who need help with the activities of daily living (using the toilet, dressing, bathing, eating, getting in and out of bed, walking around in the house or apartment). To date, this has been a private responsibility, with individuals and families providing care or paying for it out of their own funds. The government gets involved only if you go into a nursing home and “spend down,” using all your money until you have just $2,000. Then you qualify for Medicaid, the government’s health program for the poor.

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Posted on June 2, 2010  |  Write the first comment
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