End-of-Life Medicare and Medicaid Expenditures for Dually Eligible Beneficiaries

Health Care Financing Review - Summer 2006
Vol. 27, No. 4
Summer 2006
Liu, K., Wiener, J.M., and M.R. Niefield
pp. 95-110

In 1995, combined Medicare and Medicaid spending in the last year of life for dually eligible beneficiaries was more than $40,000 per beneficiary. Medicaid’s share, primarily for long-term care (LTC), constituted about 40 percent of the total. Beneficiaries under age 65, Black persons, and individuals who died in a hospital had higher than average expenditures. The vast majority (86 percent) received some form of supportive services (nursing home, home care, hospice services). It is critical that policy deliberations consider both acute and LTC use concurrently because of their extensive use by dually eligible beneficiaries, as well as the interaction of the two funding sources (Medicare and Medicaid) that cover them.

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