Medicare was created in 1965 to provide health insurance to people over 65, as well as people with permanent disabilities. As of 2010, more than 47 million people are enrolled in the program.
The federal government expects Medicare outlays for 2010 to cost an estimated $504 million. The costs of inpatient and outpatient services, hospitalization, prescriptions, hospice, physician payments and home health care are included in this amount. This makes up 12 percent of the total federal budget for the year, as per the official Budget of the U.S. Government, published by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).
To see if you qualify for Medicare and to fill out an application, visit the Medicare website or your local Medicare office.
A Medicare outlay is the amount of money the federal government pays for medical services to care for the elderly and disabled who participate in the Medicare program.