medicare


Why the Elderly Should Support Health Care Rationing

On the face of it, it would seem preposterous to argue that the over 65 population should support health care rationing. After all, both Democrats and Republicans regularly pledge to protect Medicare from any changes and attack the other party for threatening the program. And in a 2012 Pew Foundation poll, over 65ers by a […]

Reimagining Geriatrics

A little over a year ago, I found myself burning out and realized that my work life was unsustainable.  I’d been working at a Federally Qualified Health Center, and had become the site’s medical director a few months before. I was practicing as a primary care doc, trying to improve our clinical workflows, problem-solving around […]

Preparing for the Final Exam of Life

Recently, I was taken aback by being asked to deliver the memorial eulogy for our departed classmates at our upcoming 50th year High School Reunion. Why me, I asked? Isn’t there a Priest or Rabbi in our class who is used to doing something like this? That question not only did not seem to matter […]

The Medicare Showdown

A distinct advantage of writing for my Over 65 colleagues and readers is that I can safely refer to bits of popular culture now long gone. In this case, I want to invoke the “perils of Pauline,” the troubles of a famous heroine in the silent film era. She went from one likely disaster to […]

Medicare and the Physician Shortage

Still vivid in my mind is a visit I paid to the director of Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services in Washington, D.C. in 1990 in the company of the president and second vice president of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. I was then its first vice president. The president spoke on behalf of […]

On Turning 65

The first thing I learned about my new Medicare card is that it’s hard to fit in my wallet. Made of paper, not laminated, it’s a tad bigger than the slots perfectly-sized for a credit card, a driver’s license, or my Blue Cross-Blue Shield card, which until Sept. 1, the start of the month of […]

Becoming the “It’s Not All About Me” Generation

Some months ago my colleague, dear friend, and mentor, Gordon Moore, showed me the draft of a proposal he had written for Medicare reform. Gordon and I have worked together and exchanged ideas regularly for more than 30 years, so it’s not surprising that we agree that we in the over 65 generation are key for […]

I’m Over 65 and Counting the Money

Not long ago, I retired from the clinical practice of psychiatry. One of the factors that comforted me in making that decision was that I was eligible to receive Medicare, so I wouldn’t have to try to obtain some sort of expensive private health insurance or COBRA to tide me over. Actually, I was 66, […]

Magical Thinking, Overtreatment, and Neglect of Patient and Family Values

My friend and college classmate Ted Marmor (see his recent post here) and Jonathan Oberlander have a short but illuminating article in a recent issue of the Journal of General Internal Medicine – “From HMOs to ACOs: The Quest for the Holy Grail in U.S. Health Policy.”  They offer a chastening analysis of our almost […]