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There is a close relationship between the current concerns over government debt and prior years’ controversies over the Affordable Care Act (ACA) or health reform. The link between them is that Medicare costs will rise significantly above current levels. That will put pressure on entitlement spending that will be nearly impossible to offset with other spending cuts. Medicare itself will need significant reform.
However, the principal factor behind the enormous cost increases is the huge increase in the senior population. The population for those 0 to 54 years is expected to rise just 16% between 2010 and 2050. The population of those 55 and over is expected to grow nearly 70% over that same period and the older the age, the greater the increase. This major shift in the aging population is the main cause of higher Medicare costs. Higher per-capita costs just add to the problem. Continue reading