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Executive Summary

CBO's CATASTROPHIC CARE COST EXPERT DONALD MUSE, PhD, is reportedly being considered for two positions in the Bush Administration. The Congressional Budget Office's principal analyst for Medicare and Medicaid is expected to move to either the Office of Management & Budget or the deputy assistant secretary for planning and evaluation at HHS. In either post, he will be in a key position to monitor implementation of the Medicare drug benefit established under the Catastrophic Care Act of 1988. Muse, who earned his doctorate degree in statistics and sociology from Florida State University, was actively involved in negotiations on the Medicare drug benefit last year. During the discussions regarding House and Senate proposals, he provided legislators with projections for drug utilization and program costs. Congress ultimately relied on the low-side cost estimates provided by CBO rather than on projections by HHS. HCFA projected program costs almost three times higher than CBO. Muse previously worked in HHS. From 1979 until he joined CBO in 1986, Muse was a division director in the Actuary Office within the Health Care Financing Administration. In 1985-1986, HCFA placed him on assignment in the Senate Finance Committee.

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