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Boomers struggle with basic Medicare myths

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For a demographic concerned about the future of Medicare, they sure don’t understand the basics of it.

About 90 percent of baby boomers are more concerned about Medicare because of the upcoming presidential election, according to the eHealth Baby Boomer Survey.

Medicare accounts for about 20 percent of federal spending and 4 percent of the U.S. economy. Politicians naturally want to get the costs under control.  Republican vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan’s long-term budget plan would stop the insurance program and replace it with vouchers to help individuals buy private plans.

Boomers did not do so well when it came to knowing whether four common Medicare myths were true or false.

  • Myth: Medicare works just like regular health insurance – 40 percent knew this was false;
  • Myth: Medicare is free – 70 percent knew this was false;
  • Myth: A person can enroll in Medicare any time after they’re 65, without penalty – 23 percent knew this was false;
  • Myth: Medicare covers everything – 80 percent knew this was false.

Being for or against the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act did not matter when it came to identifying the Medicare myths. Both sides generally answered correctly equally.


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