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How many people are enrolled in Medicare by state?

How many people are enrolled in Medicare by State?

It’s easy to get Medicare and Medicaid confused. They were both created in 1965 to help older and low-income Americans buy private health insurance — as part of President Lyndon B. Johnson’s “Great Society” vision.

The difference between these two government-run programs is that Medicaid provides health coverage for people with a low income, while Medicare has nothing to do with income levels.

Medicare is for people age 65 or older, people with severe disabilities, and people with End-Stage Renal Disease (e.g., permanent kidney failure).

About 19 million people enrolled when Medicare first started. In 2015, that number grew to nearly 56 million. President Johnson’s vision for meeting America’s health care needs has been fruitful.

So, what types of Medicare plans are available? And how many people per state were enrolled each month of the year? Keep reading to find out!

Four Types of Medicare

How many people are enrolled in Medicare by State?

You can choose from four different types of Medicare plans:

  • Part A (Hospital Insurance) – This plan covers inpatient hospital stays, care in a skilled nursing facility, hospice care, and some home health care.
  • Part B (Medical Insurance) – This plan covers particular doctors’ services, outpatient care, medical supplies, and preventive services.
  • Part C (Medicare Advantage) – This plan is offered by a private company in contract with Medicare to give you all your Part A and Part B benefits. If you’re enrolled in Medicare Advantage, this plan covers most Medicare services that aren’t paid for under Original Medicare.
  • Part D (Prescription Drug Coverage) – This plan adds prescription drug coverage to choice Medicare plans and is offered by insurance companies and other private companies approved by Medicare. Medicare Advantage plans may also offer prescription drug coverage.


We collected data from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and ranked each state by:

  • How many people are enrolled in Medicare by state
  • How many people are enrolled in which type of Medicare plan
  • Medicare counts per month

Highlights and Trends

How many people are enrolled in Medicare by State?

– Florida and Texas

Florida and Texas have the highest number of people enrolled in Medicare. They are the only two states whose numbers went over two million.

Florida attracts more seniors than any other state in the U.S.

About 55,000 Americans over age 55 move to Florida each year because of all the beaches, the warm weather, and no state income tax.

Texas is the second most populous U.S. state. Its 2017 population is 28.449 million, and roughly seven percent of Texas’ population is enrolled in Medicare.

Texas’ affordable housing could be a major contributor to its large population. After all, this state falls outside of the United States housing bubble, with the average price of a Texan home being $151,800.

Compare that price to the average cost of a home in the entire U.S. $236,400 and you would be saving almost $85,000 living in Texas! Like Florida, Texas also has no state income tax.

– Size Matters

The District of Columbia, North Dakota, and Wyoming had the lowest number of people enrolled in Medicare. The District of Columbia had the smallest amount, with its numbers in the 70,000s for people enrolled in Medicare. Wyoming and North Dakota’s numbers were in the 90,000s.

According to the United States Census Bureau in 2015, these two states and DC also have low populations:

  • District of Columbia – 672,228
  • North Dakota – 756,927
  • Wyoming – 586,107

For perspective, North Dakota is the fourth least-populated state in the U.S.

– Let’s Look at the Numbers

From March 2016 to February 2017, the number of people enrolled in an Original Medicare plan dropped from 38,083,635 to 37,773,901.

However, there was an increase throughout the year in upgraded Medicare plans, such as Medicare Advantage.

In March 2016, there were 18,559,890, whereas in February 2017, there were 19,966,458.

Over a span of 12 months, there was a 0.05 percent increase in those who enrolled in Medicare health plans and a 0.12 percent increase in those with any prescription drug plans that Medicare offered.

As a whole, Medicare appears to be growing in popularity, and customers seem pleased with this program’s health plans.

Care for Your Health

How many people are enrolled in Medicare by State?

No matter your age or circumstances, healthcare is a must. If you want to live a long life, you must care for your health, and a major step in that direction is to find the right health plan for you.

Medicare isn’t for everyone, but if you meet the qualifications, consider getting a new health plan with this program. It could be exactly what you need!

Complete List: Medicare Enrollment by State

– To sort the table by category, click on header columns.

– Click here for the full stats and sources for each category. For all media inquiries, please email: [email protected]


  1. https://www.whitehouse.gov/1600/presidents/lyndonbjohnson, “36. Lyndon B. Johnson,” May 9, 2017.
  2. https://www.medicareinteractive.org/get-answers/introduction-to-medicare/explaining-medicare/what-is-the-difference-between-medicare-and-medicaid, “What is the difference between Medicare and Medicaid?” May 9, 2017.
  3. https://www.medicare.gov/sign-up-change-plans/decide-how-to-get-medicare/whats-medicare/what-is-medicare.html, “What’s Medicare?” May 9, 2017.
  4. http://www.beckershospitalreview.com/finance/117-medicare-statistics-to-know.html, “117 Medicare statistics to know (July 31, 2015),” May 9, 2017.
  5. https://www.cms.gov/Research-Statistics-Data-and-Systems/Statistics-Trends-and-Reports/Dashboard/Medicare-Enrollment/Enrollment%20Dashboard.html, “Medicare Enrollment Dashboard (November 2017),” January 30, 2018.
  6. https://www.fool.com/retirement/general/2016/04/30/these-3-states-are-the-most-popular-for-retirees.aspx, “These 3 States Are the Most Popular for Retirees (April 30, 2016),” January 30, 2018.
  7. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_Texas, “Demographics of Texas (January 24, 2018),” January 30, 2018.
  8. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_housing_bubble, “United States housing bubble (January 9, 2018),” January 30, 2018.
  9. http://www.bestplaces.net/state/texas, “Texas State,” May 9, 2017.
  10. https://ycharts.com/indicators/sales_price_of_existing_homes, “US Existing Home Median Sales Price:246800.0 USD for Dec 2017,” January 30, 2018.
  11. http://www.bankrate.com/finance/taxes/state-with-no-income-tax-better-or-worse-1.aspx, “State with no income tax: Better or worse? (January 13, 2015)” May 9, 2017.
  12. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_Dakota, “North Dakota (January 28, 2018),” January 30, 2018.
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