The Medicare trustees' annual financial reports are scheduled to be released on Monday, the AP/San Francisco Chronicle reports.
In their 2011 report, Medicare trustees predicted that the program's hospital insurance trust fund would run out of money by 2024. If the trust fund ever were depleted, the program would have to rely on payroll taxes and would be able to cover only partial benefits, according to the trustees.
Growth in Medicare spending has slowed somewhat, meaning that while the program is heading toward insolvency, it is not immediate, according to the AP/Chronicle. Each day about 10,000 baby boomers become eligible for Medicare, which has about 50 million beneficiaries (Ohlemacher, AP/San Francisco Chronicle, 4/23).