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Old 06-15-2014, 08:46 PM
 
21,198 posts, read 13,320,461 times
Reputation: 12414

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I have noted a disturbing trend among our medicare patients. Obamacare heisted $750 billion from medicare, which made necessary cuts in payments for medicare patients, in order to make Obamacare "practical" (assuming young people signed up as well). This trend has been reflected in offices of other specialists as well (my father -an Obama supporter- now has to wait 4 months for a cardiology appointment that previously has a three week wait). We are finding it very difficult to obtain total hip and knee replacements for our medicare patients (previously there was no problem). Reimbursement, of course, for total joints was markedly reduced as of Jan 1st.

The cuts in medicare payments to providers and hospitals mainly involved specialists and many procedures- primary care visits actually experienced a small increase in reimbursement.

As a result of payment to specialists (50% for us), we have had to limit medicare slots for patients, or experience insolvency, due to fixed overhead payments. Our "wait time" for someone with regular insurance is one to two weeks; the same "wait time" for medicare patient is 3 months. Medicare patients, of course, are upset about delays. However, Obama promised such delays and cuts in medicare programs; many senior democrats, however, ignored Obama's warnings and voted for him into a second term.

Were seniors really this ignorant and misinformed? Did they believe that their votes would have no consequences for THEM and only other people?

Take home message- one does not improve the quality of care and access for patients by reducing $750 billion of support. If this was true, we could simply cut Obamacare funding $1 trillion and "make it better"!

Don't be an idiot when you vote.
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Old 06-15-2014, 09:00 PM
 
4,130 posts, read 4,007,658 times
Reputation: 3041
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Old 06-15-2014, 09:10 PM
 
13,124 posts, read 6,373,477 times
Reputation: 7989
Quote:
Originally Posted by hawkeye2009 View Post
I have noted a disturbing trend among our medicare patients. Obamacare heisted $750 billion from medicare, which made necessary cuts in payments for medicare patients, in order to make Obamacare "practical" (assuming young people signed up as well). This trend has been reflected in offices of other specialists as well (my father -an Obama supporter- now has to wait 4 months for a cardiology appointment that previously has a three week wait). We are finding it very difficult to obtain total hip and knee replacements for our medicare patients (previously there was no problem). Reimbursement, of course, for total joints was markedly reduced as of Jan 1st.

The cuts in medicare payments to providers and hospitals mainly involved specialists and many procedures- primary care visits actually experienced a small increase in reimbursement.

As a result of payment to specialists (50% for us), we have had to limit medicare slots for patients, or experience insolvency, due to fixed overhead payments. Our "wait time" for someone with regular insurance is one to two weeks; the same "wait time" for medicare patient is 3 months. Medicare patients, of course, are upset about delays. However, Obama promised such delays and cuts in medicare programs; many senior democrats, however, ignored Obama's warnings and voted for him into a second term.

Were seniors really this ignorant and misinformed? Did they believe that their votes would have no consequences for THEM and only other people?

Take home message- one does not improve the quality of care and access for patients by reducing $750 billion of support. If this was true, we could simply cut Obamacare funding $1 trillion and "make it better"!

Don't be an idiot when you vote.
Seniors have been indoctrinated into the Fairy Tale that AARP always has their best interests at heart.
They failed to understand that AARP is "Big Business" that only cares about their Corporate Bottom Line, which is Selling Insurance. They are much like the rest of the Country that believed the LIES of "You can Keep your Insurance", "You can keep your Doctor". They ignored the figures and ignored the back room Deals that made it clear that ObamaCare was only going to be good for the Big Business that cut the Deals with the Leftists.

My Mom has been lying in bed now for months with a collapsing Aorta, while she is on a Waiting List for everything - Cardiologists, required 2nd Opinion of another Cardiologist, waiting for the Panel to rule on her stint to keep her alive. Waiting on an opening date for the Hospital. Test after Test after Test - buckets of money to the Doctors who keep ordering the same Tests. Buckets of Money to the "Medicare funded group that comes by twice a week to take her blood pressure and make sure her oxygen tank is working. It's all such a scam.

She voted for Obama, probably twice ... those nice young people that came to her Senior Center to "help" her vote. It doesn't matter now whether the Seniors (and others) were "ignorant" and "uninformed" - what really matters at this point is whether she can get the urgent care she needs or not.

"Not" means she dies. Heavy price to pay for a "vote".
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Old 06-15-2014, 09:11 PM
 
Location: Area 51.5
13,893 posts, read 12,008,185 times
Reputation: 9104
Well, I'm not so sure about all that.

I'm a heart patient. I recently changed cardiologists (within the same network). I saw my new doctor within a couple of weeks of first calling. He scheduled a stress test for about a month later, then within a couple of weeks of the stress test, scheduled a heart cath. My appointment with him for the cath results were 2 weeks later.

So...........within a couple of months I saw my new doctor, had 2 major tests, had a face-to-face for the results, and was done.

My only complaint is that I think doctors are scheduling unnecessary tests because they know Medicare will pay. But the entire process was fast enough, and had the cath showed an emergency, they would have done it while I was under anesthesia for the cath. Otherwise, had I needed a stent or anything somewhat minor, I would have had to go back for that.

This was all within the last couple of months. The cath was about a month ago.

That said, I hate 0bamacare, but I have to say as a Medicare patient, I haven't noticed anything bad. My complaint is strictly what I consider unnecessary crap, which has nothing to do with Medicare.

Maybe I've just been lucky.

P.S. I wouldn't touch AARP with a 10' pole. Now that's an organization that is downright evil! And I DO NOT have supplemental insurance. That is pure SCAM!
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Old 06-15-2014, 09:23 PM
 
Location: Chesapeake Bay
6,047 posts, read 4,114,932 times
Reputation: 3522
Quote:
Originally Posted by hawkeye2009 View Post
I have noted a disturbing trend among our medicare patients. Obamacare heisted $750 billion from medicare, which made necessary cuts in payments for medicare patients, in order to make Obamacare "practical" (assuming young people signed up as well). This trend has been reflected in offices of other specialists as well (my father -an Obama supporter- now has to wait 4 months for a cardiology appointment that previously has a three week wait). We are finding it very difficult to obtain total hip and knee replacements for our medicare patients (previously there was no problem). Reimbursement, of course, for total joints was markedly reduced as of Jan 1st.

The cuts in medicare payments to providers and hospitals mainly involved specialists and many procedures- primary care visits actually experienced a small increase in reimbursement.

As a result of payment to specialists (50% for us), we have had to limit medicare slots for patients, or experience insolvency, due to fixed overhead payments. Our "wait time" for someone with regular insurance is one to two weeks; the same "wait time" for medicare patient is 3 months. Medicare patients, of course, are upset about delays. However, Obama promised such delays and cuts in medicare programs; many senior democrats, however, ignored Obama's warnings and voted for him into a second term.

Were seniors really this ignorant and misinformed? Did they believe that their votes would have no consequences for THEM and only other people?

Take home message- one does not improve the quality of care and access for patients by reducing $750 billion of support. If this was true, we could simply cut Obamacare funding $1 trillion and "make it better"!

Don't be an idiot when you vote.
Strange, I haven't noticed any problems getting appointments this year as a medicare patient. As far as specialists go, I'd bet at least half the people I see in their waiting rooms are my age or older.

As far as the $750bil is concerned perhaps you'd best do some research on that (including Paul Ryan's numbers).

Ummm, your ... is obvious.
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Old 06-15-2014, 09:30 PM
 
Location: Wyoming
9,729 posts, read 18,320,793 times
Reputation: 14637
I'm a Medicare patient. When I went to pick up my meds a couple weeks ago I discovered they were no longer covered. I've been on them for nearly 35 years. It was a relief when I turned 65 and they were again covered. (I pay $300/month towards extended/gap coverage so most everything is paid for.) That only lasted a few years. Medicare now covers $100 of the $400 cost. This isn't "feel good" medication. I need it to keep my brain tumor from growing. I guess I need to start buying from Canadian pharmacies again.

Yes, I knew Obamacare would take from Medicare. It was in the original proposal, iirc. I didn't get to vote. Did you?
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Old 06-15-2014, 09:39 PM
 
Location: Chesapeake Bay
6,047 posts, read 4,114,932 times
Reputation: 3522
Quote:
Originally Posted by WyoNewk View Post
I'm a Medicare patient. When I went to pick up my meds a couple weeks ago I discovered they were no longer covered. I've been on them for nearly 35 years. It was a relief when I turned 65 and they were again covered. (I pay $300/month towards extended/gap coverage so most everything is paid for.) That only lasted a few years. Medicare now covers $100 of the $400 cost. This isn't "feel good" medication. I need it to keep my brain tumor from growing. I guess I need to start buying from Canadian pharmacies again.

Yes, I knew Obamacare would take from Medicare. It was in the original proposal, iirc. I didn't get to vote. Did you?
Hmmm, what drug plan are you on? The various insurance companies that sell the Medicare drug plans change their formularies frequently. Its best to check them out every year before enrolling in them.
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Old 06-15-2014, 10:06 PM
 
Location: Chesapeake Bay
6,047 posts, read 4,114,932 times
Reputation: 3522
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kibby View Post
Seniors have been indoctrinated into the Fairy Tale that AARP always has their best interests at heart.
They failed to understand that AARP is "Big Business" that only cares about their Corporate Bottom Line, which is Selling Insurance. They are much like the rest of the Country that believed the LIES of "You can Keep your Insurance", "You can keep your Doctor". They ignored the figures and ignored the back room Deals that made it clear that ObamaCare was only going to be good for the Big Business that cut the Deals with the Leftists.

My Mom has been lying in bed now for months with a collapsing Aorta, while she is on a Waiting List for everything - Cardiologists, required 2nd Opinion of another Cardiologist, waiting for the Panel to rule on her stint to keep her alive. Waiting on an opening date for the Hospital. Test after Test after Test - buckets of money to the Doctors who keep ordering the same Tests. Buckets of Money to the "Medicare funded group that comes by twice a week to take her blood pressure and make sure her oxygen tank is working. It's all such a scam.

She voted for Obama, probably twice ... those nice young people that came to her Senior Center to "help" her vote. It doesn't matter now whether the Seniors (and others) were "ignorant" and "uninformed" - what really matters at this point is whether she can get the urgent care she needs or not.

"Not" means she dies. Heavy price to pay for a "vote".
You mention AARP and insurance. Out of curiosity did your Mom buy Medicare insurance thru them? AARP pushes United Healthcare Medicare Advantage plans strongly. Is that the type of insurance that she has? They are the absolute worst Advantage plans in the country and will do ANYTHING to avoid paying. United Healthcare (and AARP) advertises their Advantage plans all the time but are well known to be terrible Medicare health insurance providers.

Best to avoid them like the plague.

BTW, if your Mom is on the specific United Healthcare Advantage plans she can file a complaint directly to Medicare, that usually gets results.

Last edited by Weichert; 06-15-2014 at 10:25 PM..
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Old 06-15-2014, 10:20 PM
 
10,548 posts, read 4,582,964 times
Reputation: 2158
Quote:
Originally Posted by hawkeye2009 View Post
I have noted a disturbing trend among our medicare patients. Obamacare heisted $750 billion from medicare, which made necessary cuts in payments for medicare patients, in order to make Obamacare "practical" (assuming young people signed up as well). This trend has been reflected in offices of other specialists as well (my father -an Obama supporter- now has to wait 4 months for a cardiology appointment that previously has a three week wait). We are finding it very difficult to obtain total hip and knee replacements for our medicare patients (previously there was no problem). Reimbursement, of course, for total joints was markedly reduced as of Jan 1st.

The cuts in medicare payments to providers and hospitals mainly involved specialists and many procedures- primary care visits actually experienced a small increase in reimbursement.

As a result of payment to specialists (50% for us), we have had to limit medicare slots for patients, or experience insolvency, due to fixed overhead payments. Our "wait time" for someone with regular insurance is one to two weeks; the same "wait time" for medicare patient is 3 months. Medicare patients, of course, are upset about delays. However, Obama promised such delays and cuts in medicare programs; many senior democrats, however, ignored Obama's warnings and voted for him into a second term.

Were seniors really this ignorant and misinformed? Did they believe that their votes would have no consequences for THEM and only other people?

Take home message- one does not improve the quality of care and access for patients by reducing $750 billion of support. If this was true, we could simply cut Obamacare funding $1 trillion and "make it better"!

Don't be an idiot when you vote.
Well you're lucky enough for a surgeon not to have to take too many Medicare patients and earn more from better payers. Around where I practice in a small community it has been no different scheduling with surgeons. For primary care I have seen large increases in Medicare revenues with better post-hospitalization visit rates and the Wellness Exams.

No moneys have been directly taken from Medicare. The $750B, or whatever, are presumed less future increases. And even and idiot knows by now that no one can really predict such things.
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Old 06-15-2014, 10:41 PM
 
Location: West Michigan
12,371 posts, read 8,155,317 times
Reputation: 7352
I have not noticed any difference in my appointment scheduling and Medicare overage either. Nor have I heard anyone in my peer age group of family and friends says anything negative.
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