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Old 01-01-2016, 03:19 PM   #1
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The Truth About Medicare

Richard, Medicare is vastly abused. Example, some local people without transportation call an ambulance service to take them to the grocery store.. Medicare pays for ambulance transport. The company bills medicare. Many drs have gotten in trouble for charging medicare for seeing patients they never even treated. One local pediatrician billed over a million dollars for treating the child of some kid he got the needed info for. Medicare and Medicaid has thousands of abuse complains but nothing ever changes.

https://www.fbi.gov/neworleans/press...r-plead-guilty
I think this assertion might be confusing Medicare with Medicaid. They are different programs. Medicare is a part of Social Security that is run by the federal government. We have paid into its fund for all of our working lives after July 30, 1965. We cannot receive its benefits until we reach the age of 65, when our current insurance plan providers might decline to insure us anymore. (I speak from experience.)

If we elect to use Medicare Part B, we continue to pay a monthly premium of $104.90, and those monthly premiums will continue every month that we receive Medicare Part B benefits (unless they increase, which they occasionally do). If we receive Medicare Part D (prescription drug) benefits, we could pay additional premiums, depending on our income. In any event, we cannot collect Medicare benefits until we reach the age of 65. Medicare is an insurance program. It always has been. (Medicare Part D was established by President George W. Bush.) https://www.medicare.gov/sign-up-cha...-medicare.html
https://www.medicare.gov/your-medica...at-glance.html


Medicaid, on the other hand, is a public assistance (welfare) program. It is jointly funded by the federal government and the states, but it is administered by the various individual states. In Wisconsin, where Chico lives, it is known by the name “Badger Care.” In California, it is known as “Medi-Cal.” In Texas, it is known simply as “Texas Medicaid.” Even though Medicaid is called an insurance program, state and federal taxpayers pay the premiums, and it is a means-tested program that is available only to low income participants who do not pay premiums into it (other than taxes). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medicaid

Medicare is funded entirely by the federal Social Security program. Medicaid is funded jointly by the federal government and the states that run the individual programs. When the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) was passed and expanded Medicaid benefits at no additional cost to the states, a number of those states declined to participate because they would have been required to eventually increase their share of the funding costs. I believe that Texas was one of those states. Texas Legislature Passes Measure To Prevent Medicaid Expansion

I am aware of few abuses of Medicare by benefit recipients, although a number of health care providers have been prosecuted for Medicare fraud. No ambulance will ever take somebody to a grocery store. If you call an ambulance, it will take you to a hospital. Ambulances operate under strict laws and rules, and they generally have contracts with dispatching agencies. Even the cited source specifies that the fraud was not perpetrated by the patients, but by the doctors. It is no different than any other kind of insurance fraud. It is illegal, and if you get caught, you go to jail. An ambulance company that provided transportation to a grocery store would not be reimbursed by Medicare or Medicaid, and the owners and managers would be at risk of going to jail.

Regan, Bush, Carter or whom ever did not spend millions each year on three week vacations to resort areas. It is a lot cheaper to stay in Crawford than paying $8,000 s day for a suite in a posh Hawaii hotel.
Umm . . . not necessarily. In fact, not at all. Every single time that President Reagan had Air Force One take him to California, and every single time that President Bush had Air Force One take him to Texas, it cost the taxpayers of the United States a very great deal of money. It is always less expensive to take a single three-week vacation than seven three-day vacations, right? Travel costs must be considered, and Presidents Bush and Reagan racked up the most vacations. BTW, Hawaii is President Obama’s place of birth and the place where he grew up. He went to school there in kindergarten and from 5th through 12th grades. George Bush was a Texan. Should we complain about his choice of vacationing in Texas, rather than in Washington, D.C., or Virginia, or Maryland? And what about President Reagan? Should he not have been allowed to vacation in warm, sunny California at taxpayer expense? It’s where he lived, right?

Which President has let his wife fly the family to China for a trip to see the place and not have any official business there? Google that and you will see that trip for Michele and the girls cost the taxpayers several million.
The First Lady’s trip to China was not a “vacation,” but a cultural exchange. It was every bit “official” business. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/...trip-to-china/ It is a part of the duties of First Lady to engage in such activities. In fact, the current initiative was launched by First Lady Laura Bush, wife of former President George W. Bush, who established the program in 2001. It was a good idea then, and it remains a good idea today.

Then we have the Clintons home in NY. Tax money was used to build a nice brick home for Secret Service to use. Then the Clinton's bills the government about $3000 a month rent on the place. This will continue as long as either Clinton is still alive. We will not even get into a magazine paying Chelsa $600,000 annually for a token job just for the connection benefits to the Clintons.
Well, Snopes says that this assertion is false. “Security measures of this level are not specific to the Clintons; the homes of all Presidents are treated this way, as (to a lesser extent) are the homes of former presidents. (In 1981, for example, the Secret Service spent several months providing round-the-clock protection, at a cost of tens of thousands of dollars per day, for an empty Pacific Palisades, California, home owned by Ronald and Nancy Reagan, even though the Reagans no longer lived in or used the house, and even though it was vacant and up for sale.)” The Clintons Charged Rent to the Secret Service? : snopes.com

What does the salary paid by a private magazine to a private employee have to do with any of us? Should we be jealous because we don’t make that much?

The Democrats are now introducing an anti gun bill in the next session with a large Majority of them signing as cosponsors

https://www.nraila.org/articles/2015...epresentatives
So … don’t vote for them if you believe they do not represent your best interests. For me, the choice is simple. If faced with the choice of losing some (or all) of my guns, or losing my health care, I will choose to keep my Medicare and give up the guns. I shouldn’t have to make such a choice, but Republicans and Democrats seem hell-bent on making me make such a choice in November. Without my doctors and medicines, I doubt I could survive another five years. Without my guns, I believe I certainly could. You can be sure that I will be paying attention to the platforms being prepared by the nominees next Summer.



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Old 01-01-2016, 06:24 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Richard View Post
I think this assertion might be confusing Medicare with Medicaid. They are different programs. Medicare is a part of Social Security that is run by the federal government. We have paid into its fund for all of our working lives after July 30, 1965. We cannot receive its benefits until we reach the age of 65, when our current insurance plan providers might decline to insure us anymore. (I speak from experience.)

If we elect to use Medicare Part B, we continue to pay a monthly premium of $104.90, and those monthly premiums will continue every month that we receive Medicare Part B benefits (unless they increase, which they occasionally do). If we receive Medicare Part D (prescription drug) benefits, we could pay additional premiums, depending on our income. In any event, we cannot collect Medicare benefits until we reach the age of 65. Medicare is an insurance program. It always has been. (Medicare Part D was established by President George W. Bush.) https://www.medicare.gov/sign-up-cha...-medicare.html
https://www.medicare.gov/your-medica...at-glance.html


Medicaid, on the other hand, is a public assistance (welfare) program. It is jointly funded by the federal government and the states, but it is administered by the various individual states. In Wisconsin, where Chico lives, it is known by the name “Badger Care.” In California, it is known as “Medi-Cal.” In Texas, it is known simply as “Texas Medicaid.” Even though Medicaid is called an insurance program, state and federal taxpayers pay the premiums, and it is a means-tested program that is available only to low income participants who do not pay premiums into it (other than taxes). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medicaid

Medicare is funded entirely by the federal Social Security program. Medicaid is funded jointly by the federal government and the states that run the individual programs. When the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) was passed and expanded Medicaid benefits at no additional cost to the states, a number of those states declined to participate because they would have been required to eventually increase their share of the funding costs. I believe that Texas was one of those states. Texas Legislature Passes Measure To Prevent Medicaid Expansion

I am aware of few abuses of Medicare by benefit recipients, although a number of health care providers have been prosecuted for Medicare fraud. No ambulance will ever take somebody to a grocery store. If you call an ambulance, it will take you to a hospital. Ambulances operate under strict laws and rules, and they generally have contracts with dispatching agencies. Even the cited source specifies that the fraud was not perpetrated by the patients, but by the doctors. It is no different than any other kind of insurance fraud. It is illegal, and if you get caught, you go to jail. An ambulance company that provided transportation to a grocery store would not be reimbursed by Medicare or Medicaid, and the owners and managers would be at risk of going to jail.



Umm . . . not necessarily. In fact, not at all. Every single time that President Reagan had Air Force One take him to California, and every single time that President Bush had Air Force One take him to Texas, it cost the taxpayers of the United States a very great deal of money. It is always less expensive to take a single three-week vacation than seven three-day vacations, right? Travel costs must be considered, and Presidents Bush and Reagan racked up the most vacations. BTW, Hawaii is President Obama’s place of birth and the place where he grew up. He went to school there in kindergarten and from 5th through 12th grades. George Bush was a Texan. Should we complain about his choice of vacationing in Texas, rather than in Washington, D.C., or Virginia, or Maryland? And what about President Reagan? Should he not have been allowed to vacation in warm, sunny California at taxpayer expense? It’s where he lived, right?



The First Lady’s trip to China was not a “vacation,” but a cultural exchange. It was every bit “official” business. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/...trip-to-china/ It is a part of the duties of First Lady to engage in such activities. In fact, the current initiative was launched by First Lady Laura Bush, wife of former President George W. Bush, who established the program in 2001. It was a good idea then, and it remains a good idea today.



Well, Snopes says that this assertion is false. “Security measures of this level are not specific to the Clintons; the homes of all Presidents are treated this way, as (to a lesser extent) are the homes of former presidents. (In 1981, for example, the Secret Service spent several months providing round-the-clock protection, at a cost of tens of thousands of dollars per day, for an empty Pacific Palisades, California, home owned by Ronald and Nancy Reagan, even though the Reagans no longer lived in or used the house, and even though it was vacant and up for sale.)” The Clintons Charged Rent to the Secret Service? : snopes.com

What does the salary paid by a private magazine to a private employee have to do with any of us? Should we be jealous because we don’t make that much?



So … don’t vote for them if you believe they do not represent your best interests. For me, the choice is simple. If faced with the choice of losing some (or all) of my guns, or losing my health care, I will choose to keep my Medicare and give up the guns. I shouldn’t have to make such a choice, but Republicans and Democrats seem hell-bent on making me make such a choice in November. Without my doctors and medicines, I doubt I could survive another five years. Without my guns, I believe I certainly could. You can be sure that I will be paying attention to the platforms being prepared by the nominees next Summer.
I would like to point out that most lower income elderly on Medicare will transition to Medicaid when conditions dictate they enter a nursing home which they simply cannot afford. These are not freeloaders looking for a handout, but rather a hard working class who's circumstances forced into public assistance ( welfare ).
I too cherish those social programs designed to assist those in need and while certainly exposing and bringing to justice those who would abuse them should be pursued, I would oppose any who would promote the demise of these social programs the same as I would oppose those who would take my guns away.
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Old 01-01-2016, 06:43 PM   #3
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Fully disabled can get both too. Of course, the monthly premium has to be paid as well.


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Old 01-01-2016, 07:09 PM   #4
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Richard, I drove an ambulance for a private company when I was in college to earn extra spending money. I carried many elderly to the grocery store and the owners billed it to medicare. Granted medicare was not meant to be funding grocery trips but it happened in the 60's and it still happens today although likely not as often. Every so often I read in the paper about some company getting into trouble for the way they billed medicare.

I have two very close relatives that are in the upper level of the medical field. One has a "coder" that just codes the patients billing. One code may not bring the revenue that another related code will.

Either patient or provider abusing the system is not right. I save all my medical bills and scan them into the computer. Doing such has proven to drs that medicare paid different amounts for the same procedure at different times.

I have been on medicare for six years, beginning at age 65, although I did not sign up for social security until I was 67 and I still work today. Likely I am in the best health ever at this time. In 2004, I was given a 25% chance of living three years due to stage 4 colon cancer. In 2008, I was found to be diabetic. In 2011, I was found to have massive blockage in the arteries. Now I am still living, no trace of malignancy, the A1c is perfect and I am now on the minimum dose of meds. My arteries was just checked by my cardiologist and found to be no more than 15% blockage and that is only in one artery. What I learned is it is not what the drs can do to help us but what we can do to prevent needing the drs.
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Old 01-02-2016, 12:40 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by 1911fan View Post
Richard, I drove an ambulance for a private company when I was in college to earn extra spending money. I carried many elderly to the grocery store and the owners billed it to medicare. Granted medicare was not meant to be funding grocery trips but it happened in the 60's and it still happens today although likely not as often. Every so often I read in the paper about some company getting into trouble for the way they billed medicare.

I have two very close relatives that are in the upper level of the medical field. One has a "coder" that just codes the patients billing. One code may not bring the revenue that another related code will.

Either patient or provider abusing the system is not right. I save all my medical bills and scan them into the computer. Doing such has proven to drs that medicare paid different amounts for the same procedure at different times.

I have been on medicare for six years, beginning at age 65, although I did not sign up for social security until I was 67 and I still work today. Likely I am in the best health ever at this time. In 2004, I was given a 25% chance of living three years due to stage 4 colon cancer. In 2008, I was found to be diabetic. In 2011, I was found to have massive blockage in the arteries. Now I am still living, no trace of malignancy, the A1c is perfect and I am now on the minimum dose of meds. My arteries was just checked by my cardiologist and found to be no more than 15% blockage and that is only in one artery. What I learned is it is not what the drs can do to help us but what we can do to prevent needing the drs.
Maybe it happened in the 60's, fan, but it doesn't happen much today. For one thing, Medicare wasn't passed into law until more than half way through 1965, so Medicare was a brand-new program in the late 1960's, and regulations had not, yet, been developed. If an ambulance company was caught driving seniors to the grocery store today, they would be looking at jail time because it would be a criminal act. Period!

So . . . tell us how your stage 4 colon cancer was cured without the assistance of doctors or medicines. Was your diabetes serious? Or was it really just "pre-diabetes" than can often be controlled by diet and exercise? I don't know of many people with real diabetes who can survive without insulin and the care of a physician.

Steve Jobs didn't believe that he needed doctors, either. Look what happened to him . . .



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Old 01-02-2016, 01:51 PM   #6
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That is good explanation Richard I have always gotten the two programs confused! At this time I am 59 still not old enough for Medicare.One of the reasons I am still living in California is I have a solid medical coverage with Kaiser Permanente. Which I must have. from June 30,2014 to june 30,2015 I had twelve operations performed on my left leg. Without the coverage I am afraid to think of the debt and type of care I might be in or had received.
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Old 01-02-2016, 08:40 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by swca View Post
That is good explanation Richard I have always gotten the two programs confused! At this time I am 59 still not old enough for Medicare.One of the reasons I am still living in California is I have a solid medical coverage with Kaiser Permanente. Which I must have. from June 30,2014 to june 30,2015 I had twelve operations performed on my left leg. Without the coverage I am afraid to think of the debt and type of care I might be in or had received.

When I lived in Southern California, my group health insurance was provided by KaiserCare from Kaiser Permanente. On the day that my wife turned 65, she was dropped by KaiserCare because she was now eligible for Medicare.

My wife later passed from ALS (Lou Gehrig's Disease). She spent the last six months of her life in hospice, and I have no idea what we would have done if not for her Medicare. It paid for the hospice care, including three visits a week from a nurse's aide to bathe her and brush her teeth. (ALS causes total paralysis). I had to remain home and care for her, and my COBRA benefits expired, so I became a self-payer. It cost us most of our savings.

Not surprisingly, I have a quite different perspective on the issue of health care and the Affordable Care Act than those who have been fortunate enough never to have had to go through a serious health care issue.



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