Tag Archives: Medicare

Inappropriate Medicare Incentives Lead to Unnecessary Subspecialty Procedures

Sometimes people flat out need cameras shoved down into their stomachs.  A long history of reflux disease, for example, could prompt a gastroenterologist to perform an “upper endoscopy”—to run a thin tube down the patient’s throat in order to view … Continue reading

Posted in Health Policy | Tagged

Are Bundled Payments the Future of US Healthcare?

I spoke recently with a reporter from the USA Today, who ended up writing a nice article on bundled payments in healthcare. I promise to return to this topic on future posts. But for now, let me whet your appetite … Continue reading

Posted in Health Policy | Tagged , ,

Look How Much Medicare Spends after Patients Leave the Hospital

As readers of this blog know, Medicare costs loom large in our nation’s future. If we do not find a way to control Medicare spending, it’s hard to imagine any way to remain a solvent nation. As we continue to … Continue reading

Posted in Health Policy | Tagged ,

Is Medicare Being Too Generous To Rural Healthcare Providers?

  If you live in the rural U.S., you probably face relatively limited access to the wonders of American healthcare.  There won’t be as many physicians per capita offering you their services.  This paucity of healthcare professionals will be especially … Continue reading

Posted in Health Policy | Tagged ,

The Biggest Government Health Care Spender Since LBJ Was…Ronald Reagan?

Many readers will recognize Ronald Reagan’s famous maxim that: “Government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem.”  Some will even recognize his vehement opposition to Lyndon Johnson’s Medicare proposal, before the program was passed into law: … Continue reading

Posted in Health Policy | Tagged , , ,

Why JFK Failed to Pass Medicare

In a late night phone call during a foreign policy crisis, Kennedy expressed disdain for domestic policy, showing the kind of attitude that doomed later efforts to reform the U.S. healthcare system: “It really is true that foreign affairs is … Continue reading

Posted in Health Policy | Tagged , , ,

Medicare and the Desegregation of American Hospitals

As anyone who has followed the Obamacare roller coaster over the past 4 years knows, passing legislation is only the first step in reforming a healthcare system. Since Obamacare came into law, we have been consumed by battles over how … Continue reading

Posted in Health Policy | Tagged , ,

When It Came to Medicare Costs LBJ Concluded "What's $400 Million Between Friends!"

Lyndon Johnson’s advisers were worried. They were drafting a Medicare proposal, a major component of Johnson’s war on poverty. But the cost of this program was turning out to be much larger than expected. By their estimates, in the first … Continue reading

Posted in Health Policy | Tagged , , , ,

A Surprising Early Supporter of Obamacare: Eisenhower?

On October 10, 1952, President Dwight Eisenhower gave a speech in Salt Lake City in which he reiterated his opposition to socialized medicine. In fact, he had long asserted that he would “use every single attribute and influence of the … Continue reading

Posted in Health Policy | Tagged , , ,

How Truman's Medicare Efforts Were Foiled by Red Baiting

In The Heart of Power, David Blumenthal and James Morone relate the 75 year history of presidential efforts (typically unsuccessful) to reform the U.S. healthcare system.  I used to think major reform efforts did not happen for many years after FDR’s … Continue reading

Posted in Health Policy | Tagged , , ,