Congresswoman Colleen Hanabusa (HI-01) released the following statement on the 47th anniversary of the enactment of Medicare. President Lyndon Johnson signed Medicare into law on July 30, 1965.
"What began as a vision of ensuring that older Americans have access to what President Lyndon Johnson called 'the healing miracle of modern medicine' has since grown into one of the most popular and most successful programs in our nation's history. Medicare has proven its value, ensuring virtually universal health coverage for our seniors and the disabled in our nation.
"On the 47th anniversary of the enactment of Medicare, I want to reiterate my commitment to protecting the program from changes that will diminish its effectiveness and saddle our seniors with additional costs. And I ask everyone to join me in fulfilling what I believe is our nation's moral obligation."
In 1964, only 51 percent of Americans over the age of 65 had health care coverage. Today, Medicare provides comprehensive coverage to 48 million Americans.