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The Number: 189%

Submitted by Rob Wyse on Sun, 09/16/2018 - 19:13

What will the population of America look like in 2050 – and how will that affect the cost of Medicare? That’s one of the questions Politico looked at in a recent article by Tucker Doherty, which described the “Medicare time bomb” coming, with 7 charts.

One chart, showing expected age distribution by year according to U.S. Census estimates, shows 16% of the population, 52+ million people, eligible for Medicare. By 2050, estimates are that 23.6% of the population will be of Medicare-age, at more than 98 million people.

But the real distribution change is at the very top, of the oldest Americans. While 65-years-old or older Americans will grow by 67% from now until 2050, 85-years-old or older Americans will grow by an astronomical 189%.

And with more Americans living longer, than older group will make up for a large percentage of overall Medicare spending. As we’ve previously written about, 74% of Medicare spending goes to beneficiaries with four or more chronic conditions. According to politico, “by age 85, nearly 1-in-4 has more than five chronic conditions.”