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The Social Security Administration reported that almost nine out of ten persons receiving social security retirement benefits are signing up for the supplementary medical insurance offered under the new medicare program.A spokesman for social security said 88% of the beneficiaries who have returned their applications have decided to buy the $3-a-month policy that covers physician's bills and some other medical costs. The government subsidizes the plan by also putting up $3 a month for each policy.This ratio—with 12% refusals to join the government-sponsored plan—is almost exactly what actuaries predicted, the spokesman said.About 7 million persons have returned application cards mailed to them from Sept 1 through Oct 13.A total of 15.5 million cards were mailed to those receiving social security and railroad retirement benefits. The final deadline for their return is March 31. The insurance program will take effect July 1.Of the responses
WASHINGTON NEWS. JAMA. 1965;194(7):21-23. doi:10.1001/jama.1965.03090200149050