Medicaid, the nation's largest health insurance program, is costing the states and the federal government more than $300 billion a year. The growth of the program, which covers the poor and disabled, has outpaced state revenues, and Medicaid is now a larger component of total state spending than elementary and secondary education combined, according to the National Governors Association.
...The governors say Medicaid, which insures a quarter of the nation's children and two-thirds of its nursing-home patients, has become so expensive that it now, on average, makes up 22 percent of states' budgets, compared with 10 percent in 1987.
Nursing home spending is, pardon the expression, the old maid of the health care sector. Nobody wants to pay for it. I know affluent elderly who ask how they can transfer assets to their children so that they can be eligible for Medicaid should they require a nursing home.
It may be quite rational for someone to decided that they do not want to build up savings to cover a stay in a nursing home. It's not what anyone looks forward to.
For Discussion. If nursing home stays should be paid by the private sector, then what incentives could make that happen?