Political  Calculations

How many pages does it take to explain the basics of the U.S. Medicare program?

If you answered "a lot more than it used to", you're right! Each year, legal publisher CCH puts out a book simply titled Medicare Explained, which they describe as follows:

A book for Medicare beneficiaries and others who need a relatively thorough explanation of the Medicare program with particular emphasis on services covered in institutional settings and services provided by physicians and suppliers. A detailed explanation is provided regarding eligibility, enrollment, benefits, exclusions and payment rules for Medicare Parts A, B, C and D. This book also explains the process for submitting beneficiary claims and filing an appeal.

As we saw with CCH's Standard Federal Tax Reporter and the U.S. tax code, the growth of the complexity of the laws and regulations affecting Medicare can be measured by the number of pages this particular book requires each year. The summary for the 2012 edition of CCH's Medicare Explained illustrates why that's the case:


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