The Medicare Current Beneficiary Survey (MCBS) is a powerful tool for analyzing the Medicare population. Based on a stratified random sample, we can derive information about the health care use, expenditure, and financing of Medicare's 37 million enrollees. We can also learn about those enrollees' health status, living arrangements, and access to and satisfaction with care. The MCBS allows for detailed analysis of the dually eligible population. The 1997 sample of dually eligible beneficiaries totaled about 3,500 respondents. In addition to Medicare expenditures the MCBS collects data on health expenditures paid for by Medicaid, by others, and by the beneficiaries themselves. Demographic data, and information on living arrangements, and health conditions are also collected. All of this information can be combined to offer a more complete profile of the dually eligible population than would be possible from Medicare administrative data alone.
* Nearly one-quarter of dually eligible beneficiaries live in nursing facilities.
* Only 2 percent of Medicare beneficiaries not eligible for Medicaid reside in nursing facilities.
* Over one-half of dually...