March 17, 1998


It is time to fulfill our obligation to older Americans. It is time to expand the availability of health care to those who need it most. This time of prosperity should not be a time of delay -- it should be a time of action.

- President Bill Clinton
March 17, 1998

Today, President Clinton joins Democratic Members of Congress on Capitol Hill to unveil legislation that would provide greater health insurance options for an estimated 300,000 to 400,000 Americans ages 55 to 65.

Protecting America's Most Vulnerable Population. Adults ages 55 to 65 are part of one of the nation's most vulnerable and difficult to insure populations: they have less access to employer-based health insurance; they are twice as likely to have health problems; and they are at greater risk of losing coverage. Today, the President releases a state-by-state analysis that documents the difficulty that Americans in this age range have gaining access to health insurance. According to the report, twenty-two percent of Americans ages 55 to 65 -- a total of five million people -- are either uninsured or insured through the individual insurance market.

Giving Americans New Choices To Gain Access To Health Care Coverage. The legislation unveiled on the Hill today provides new health insurance options for Americans ages to 55 to 65. This legislation, supported by the President, would:

Protecting Medicare For The Future. The Congressional Budget Office recently released estimates showing that the Medicare buy-in proposal is a carefully targeted policy that will not burden the Medicare Trust Fund:

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