CBO: Smaller deficits projected as Medicare and Medicaid spending declines slightly

In the Congressional Budget Office's latest forecast, reduced costs for medical services and labor have trimmed the 10-year projected cost of Medicare and Medicaid by $89 billion.

The Wall Street Journal: Deficit Forecast Trimmed As Rates Stay Low
Smaller deficits are the result of a variety of factors, including higher tax revenue and economic growth, budget cuts and new limits on government spending. The agency forecast the government would spend slightly less on Medicare and Medicaid over the next decade than it estimated earlier this year. Still, the changes were relatively minor-;less than 1% of total spending on the programs. CBO expects the deficit to shrink for several years before starting a steady expansion in 2018, driven by the aging U.S. population, higher health-care costs and increasing subsidies for certain federal programs (Paletta, 8/27).

Kaiser Health News: Capsules: CBO Projects Lower Medicare and Medicaid Costs
Reduced costs for medical services and labor have trimmed the 10-year projected cost of Medicare and Medicaid by $89 billion, the Congressional Budget Office said Wednesday. Medicare spending is projected to drop by $49 billion -; or less than 1 percent -; from 2015 and 2024, while Medicaid spending is expected to drop by $40 billion -; or about 1 percent -; over the next decade, CBO said in an update to its April forecast (Carey, 8/27). 

The Associated Press: US Economy Forecast To Grow By 1.5 Percent In 2014
The Congressional Budget Office on Wednesday forecast that the U.S. economy will grow by just 1.5 percent in 2014, undermined by a poor performance during the first three months of the year. The new assessment was considerably more pessimistic than the Obama administration's, which predicted last month that the economy would expand by 2.6 percent this year even though it contracted by an annual rate of 2.1 percent in the first quarter (Taylor, 8/27).

http://www.kaiserhealthnews.orgThis article was reprinted from kaiserhealthnews.org with permission from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. Kaiser Health News, an editorially independent news service, is a program of the Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonpartisan health care policy research organization unaffiliated with Kaiser Permanente.

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