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Aging in Place

We must ensure seniors remain in their homes for as long as they and their loved ones feel comfortable and safe. The cost of institutionalizing older Americans is prohibitive, and worse, the psychologic impact is devastating.  Doing housecalls over thirty years, I have learned how older adults sustain themselves in their home.   As well, there are many innovators on …

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Lost

Evelyn was my patient for 30 years.  She lost her husband, and even a son.  As mobility and vision decreased, she lost her drivers license and independence. Still, quality of life was sustained by family, friends, faith, and her dog, Toady. In her late 90s she faded, and knew she was at end-of-life.  Our past conversations prepared her for this …

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Fast Food

My 97 year old mother loves fast food.  Is it good for her?  Easy answer:  She’s 97 years old. Every other weekend, I pick her up and she stays overnight with us.  As at her home, she has trouble with the TV remote, the microwave oven, but more difficult is putting up with the “healthy” food we eat.   Yes, …

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Deductibles

Before going on Medicare, my health insurance deductible was escalating exponentially.  It was $5,000 per year, whereas two decades before it was $250.  Enrolling in Medicare was not a reprieve, as now I have two deductibles in Part A and Part B.  Part A, hospital and inpatient services, is $1,364 per “benefit period.”  You need to look this up (Medicare …

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The 4-day rule

f you are a Medicare patient and reach the 4th day of hospitalization, a plan is launched to jettison you out of the hospital, stat.  Why?  You cost money.As an older adult, it takes longer to heal and recover from illness.  But the hospital doesn’t care about age inequities as you are a costly liability that eats into their profit.Understandably, …

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Game plan: Business takeover of healthcare

Time:  30 years ago.Strategy:  Streamline care into business algorithms controlling medical decision-making; eliminate physician time to listen and ask questions disrupting the doctor-patient relationship; computerize information to facilitate their billing and ferret out pre-existing conditions to deny care.How:  Create favorable laws using lobbyists who financially influence politicians; make doctors a commodity and silence their voice dangling contracts.The goal:  Control costs, …