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The Medicare Program Skip to content

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The Medicare Program

Medicare, the federal health insurance program that provides benefits to 34 million Americans aged 65 and older and 5 million disabled Americans, has undergone many changes since the Balanced Budget Act of 1997 (BBA). In this AARP Public Policy Institute Data Digest, Normandy Brangan provides updated information on key features of the Medicare program, including descriptions of Medicare-covered services, how the program is financed, how beneficiaries pay for health care, how Medicare services are delivered, how Medicare pays providers and oversees quality, and projections of future Medicare spending. (10 pages)

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