United States Health Care Policy


For elders eligible for social security the federal Medicare system funds most hospital care, much of the outpatient care, and very little long term care. To obtain Medicare, elders who have immigrated as “followers of children” and not paid into U.S. social security system must either buy into the system or become eligible for Medicaid.


A combination federal and state program, Medicaid varies from state to state, but funds health care, including nursing home care for low income seniors. Legislation passed in the 1990’s increased the difficulty in accessing Medicaid by older non-citizen immigrants.