Budget Options

Reports on Budget Options

To help inform lawmakers about the budgetary implications of various approaches to altering federal policies, CBO periodically issues a volume of policy options (called Options for Reducing the Deficit) covering a broad range of issues as well as separate reports that include options for changing federal tax and spending policies in particular areas. The options, which are accessible from this page, are derived from many sources and reflect a range of possibilities. For each option, CBO presents an estimate of its effects on the budget but makes no recommendations. Inclusion or exclusion of any particular option does not imply an endorsement or rejection by CBO. This search is updated regularly to include only the most recent version of a particular option.

Title Latest Estimate 10-Year Savings (Billions)
Introduce Minimum Out-of-Pocket Requirements in TRICARE for Life $33
Change the Cost-Sharing Rules for Medicare and Restrict Medigap Insurance $27, $100, $122
Reduce Medicare’s Coverage of Bad Debt $23, $46, $74
Consolidate and Reduce Federal Payments for Graduate Medical Education at Teaching Hospitals $68, $81
Use an Alternative Measure of Inflation to Index Social Security and Other Mandatory Programs $257
Increase All Taxes on Alcoholic Beverages to $16 per Proof Gallon and Index Them for Inflation $92, $114
Increase Excise Taxes on Tobacco Products $42
Establish Caps on Federal Spending for Medicaid $501, $539, $836, $871
Limit State Taxes on Health Care Providers $41, $209, $526
Reduce Federal Medicaid Matching Rates $68, $604, $667
Increase the Premiums Paid for Medicare Part B $57, $406, $448
Reduce Medicare Advantage Benchmarks $392
Reduce Tax Subsidies for Employment-Based Health Insurance $500, $651, $893
Eliminate or Limit Itemized Deductions $541, $1143, $1356, $2507
Adopt a Voucher Plan and Slow the Growth of Federal Contributions for Federal Employees' Health Benefits $16, $18
Introduce Enrollment Fees in TRICARE for Life $16
Increase the Payroll Tax Rate for Medicare Hospital Insurance $878, $1736
Raise the Age of Eligibility for Medicare to 67 $15, $22
Modify Payments to Medicare Advantage Plans for Health Risk $47, $67
Reduce Quality Bonus Payments to Medicare Advantage Plans $18, $94
Modify TRICARE Enrollment Fees and Cost Sharing for Working-Age Military Retirees $11
Reduce Appropriations for Global Health to Their Level in 2000 $57