A Medicare buy-in program would allow qualifying individuals currently ineligible for Medicare to purchase a Medicare-like health insurance plan. The buy-in would be administered as a distinct program but could take advantage of Medicare’s premium structure, benefit design, or provider payment rates (NASI 2020). After comprehensive health reform failed to materialize during the Clinton administration, Medicare buy-in policies gained prominence as potential incremental reforms (Johnson, Moon, and Davidoff 2002).1 Given the popularity of the Medicare program, borrowing elements from the existing program may be an appealing way to build upon the reforms made under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), short of more comprehensive, Medicare for All–type reforms.
Policy Research & Analysis
The National Institute for Health Care Reform (NIHCR) contracted with the Center for Studying Health System Change (HSC) between 2009 and 2013 to conduct health policy research and analyses to improve the organization, financing and delivery of health care in the United States. HSC ceased operations on Dec. 31, 2013, after merging with Mathematica Policy Research, which assumed the HSC contract to complete NIHCR projects. Beginning in 2014, NIHCR has contracted with Altarum Institute’s Center for Sustainable Health Spending and others, with a focus on research to improve health in Detroit.