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Medicare Beneficiaries' Out-of-Pocket Spending for Health Care

Summary of Publication

Half of all Medicare beneficiaries in the fee-for-service program spent at least $3,595 of their own money on health care in 2011. That represents 18 percent or more of their income spent for health care premiums and services. One in 10 beneficiaries—over 3.5 million people—spent more than $10,436. The burden of health care costs was particularly heavy for the sickest, oldest, and near-poor beneficiaries.