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The SSRC Library allows visitors to access materials related to self-sufficiency programs, practice and research. Visitors can view common search terms, conduct a keyword search or create a custom search using any combination of the filters at the left side of this page. To conduct a keyword search, type a term or combination of terms into the search box below, select whether you want to search the exact phrase or the words in any order, and click on the blue button to the right of the search box to view relevant results.

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  • Individual Author: Gould, Elise; Cooper, David
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2013

    Policymakers considering changes to social insurance programs such as Social Security and Medicare must consider the economic realities confronting elderly Americans. Many of America’s 41 million seniors are just one bad economic shock away from significant material hardship. Most seniors live on modest retirement incomes, which often are barely adequate—and sometimes inadequate—to cover the costs of basic necessities and support a simple, yet dignified, quality of life. For these seniors, and even for those with greater means, Social Security and Medicare are the bedrock of their financial security. Any proposed changes to these programs must be evaluated not just for their impact on future budget deficits, but for their impact on living standards of the elderly. In this study, we use the Supplemental Poverty Measure (SPM) from the U.S. Census Bureau to assess the economic health of the elderly population in the United States, overall and by age, gender, and race and ethnicity. Using evidence on elderly economic insecurity from Wider Opportunities for Women (WOW), we identify...

    Policymakers considering changes to social insurance programs such as Social Security and Medicare must consider the economic realities confronting elderly Americans. Many of America’s 41 million seniors are just one bad economic shock away from significant material hardship. Most seniors live on modest retirement incomes, which often are barely adequate—and sometimes inadequate—to cover the costs of basic necessities and support a simple, yet dignified, quality of life. For these seniors, and even for those with greater means, Social Security and Medicare are the bedrock of their financial security. Any proposed changes to these programs must be evaluated not just for their impact on future budget deficits, but for their impact on living standards of the elderly. In this study, we use the Supplemental Poverty Measure (SPM) from the U.S. Census Bureau to assess the economic health of the elderly population in the United States, overall and by age, gender, and race and ethnicity. Using evidence on elderly economic insecurity from Wider Opportunities for Women (WOW), we identify the share of the elderly population that is particularly vulnerable to changes in social programs. Our analysis enables us to estimate how proposed increased cost-sharing by Medicare beneficiaries or reduced Social Security benefits would impact the well-being of a significant portion of the elderly population. (Author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Kaiser Family Foundation
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2012

    The Medicare Modernization Act of 2003 (MMA) established a voluntary outpatient prescription drug benefit for people on Medicare, known as Part D, that went into effect in 2006. All 49 million elderly and disabled beneficiaries have access to the Medicare drug benefit through private plans approved by the federal government. Medicare replaced Medicaid as the source of drug coverage for beneficiaries with coverage under both programs (“dual eligibles”). Beneficiaries with low incomes and modest assets are eligible for assistance with Part D plan premiums and cost sharing. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 made some important changes to Part D – in particular, phasing out the coverage gap by 2020. (author abstract)

    The Medicare Modernization Act of 2003 (MMA) established a voluntary outpatient prescription drug benefit for people on Medicare, known as Part D, that went into effect in 2006. All 49 million elderly and disabled beneficiaries have access to the Medicare drug benefit through private plans approved by the federal government. Medicare replaced Medicaid as the source of drug coverage for beneficiaries with coverage under both programs (“dual eligibles”). Beneficiaries with low incomes and modest assets are eligible for assistance with Part D plan premiums and cost sharing. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 made some important changes to Part D – in particular, phasing out the coverage gap by 2020. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Cubanski, Juliette; Neuman, Tricia; Damico, Anthony; Huang, Jennifer
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2009

    In addition to the basic benefits provided under Medicare, most beneficiaries have some source of supplemental coverage, such as employer plans or Medigap, to help pay cost-sharing requirements and pay for some services that are not covered by the program. In addition, a majority of beneficiaries have prescription drug coverage from various sources, including Medicare Part D plans that became available in 2006. Sources of supplemental coverage and drug coverage vary widely by income, race/ethnicity, urban/rural area, health status, and other characteristics.

    This chartpack presents new information on the sources of supplemental and prescription drug coverage among Medicare beneficiaries in 2007, the most recent year for which national data are available. It provides a detailed look at the characteristics of beneficiaries with various sources of drug coverage in the second year of the Medicare Part D drug benefit. The chartpack also examines prescription drug coverage and low-income drug subsidy status among beneficiaries with low incomes.

    The chartpack is organized...

    In addition to the basic benefits provided under Medicare, most beneficiaries have some source of supplemental coverage, such as employer plans or Medigap, to help pay cost-sharing requirements and pay for some services that are not covered by the program. In addition, a majority of beneficiaries have prescription drug coverage from various sources, including Medicare Part D plans that became available in 2006. Sources of supplemental coverage and drug coverage vary widely by income, race/ethnicity, urban/rural area, health status, and other characteristics.

    This chartpack presents new information on the sources of supplemental and prescription drug coverage among Medicare beneficiaries in 2007, the most recent year for which national data are available. It provides a detailed look at the characteristics of beneficiaries with various sources of drug coverage in the second year of the Medicare Part D drug benefit. The chartpack also examines prescription drug coverage and low-income drug subsidy status among beneficiaries with low incomes.

    The chartpack is organized in three sections:
    -Section 1—Supplemental Coverage. This section examines the share of Medicare beneficiaries relying on various sources of supplemental coverage in 2007, and the characteristics of beneficiaries with different types of supplemental coverage.
    -Section 2—Prescription Drug Coverage. This section describes the primary sources of prescription drug coverage among Medicare beneficiaries in 2007, and which groups of beneficiaries were more likely than others to lack drug coverage.
    -Section 3—Prescription Drug Coverage and Subsidies Among Low-Income Beneficiaries. This section examines sources of drug coverage in 2007 among low-income beneficiaries (defined as beneficiaries having annual income of $15,000 or less for individuals/$20,000 or less for couples), their enrollment in the Part D low-income subsidy (LIS) program, and sources of drug coverage for low-income beneficiaries who were not receiving low income subsidy assistance. This section also identifies characteristics of those individuals who were—and were not—receiving LIS in 2007, which could be helpful in guiding future LIS outreach efforts to certain target populations.

    This chartpack is based on Kaiser Family Foundation analysis of data from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Medicare Current Beneficiary Survey (MCBS) Access to Care file, 2007. The Access to Care file contains demographic and health insurance data for a nationally representative sample of 15,806 Medicare beneficiaries, along with information on health and functional status, access to care, and satisfaction with care. More information about the MCBS Access to Care file and methods used in analyzing the data is provided in the Appendix. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: McGarry, Kathleen; Schoeni, Robert
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2003

    Out-of-pocket medical costs are concentrated at the end of life. At the same time, poverty is three to four times more common among elderly widows than among similarly aged married women. When the possible relationship between these two facts are explored, out-of-pocket medical spending in the months before death is found to be large relative to income and could thus negatively affect the financial well-being of the surviving spouse. Simulations investigate the extent to which expansions in insurance coverage to include nursing home care, long hospital stays, or prescription drugs could improve the financial outcomes for widow(er)s. (author abstract)

    This article is based on working papers published by the National Poverty Center and the Retirement Research Center at the University of Michigan.

    Out-of-pocket medical costs are concentrated at the end of life. At the same time, poverty is three to four times more common among elderly widows than among similarly aged married women. When the possible relationship between these two facts are explored, out-of-pocket medical spending in the months before death is found to be large relative to income and could thus negatively affect the financial well-being of the surviving spouse. Simulations investigate the extent to which expansions in insurance coverage to include nursing home care, long hospital stays, or prescription drugs could improve the financial outcomes for widow(er)s. (author abstract)

    This article is based on working papers published by the National Poverty Center and the Retirement Research Center at the University of Michigan.

  • Individual Author: U.S. Congress
    Reference Type: Statute
    Year: 1935

    This statute established the U.S. Social Security system.  It provided benefits to the disabled and unemployed and included titles relating to social supports for the elderly, the blind, women and children, as well as established the Aid to Families with Dependent Children program. 

    This statute established the U.S. Social Security system.  It provided benefits to the disabled and unemployed and included titles relating to social supports for the elderly, the blind, women and children, as well as established the Aid to Families with Dependent Children program. 

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