View Full Version : Are Surgeries Really Being Wasted on Seniors?
10-24-11, 09:35 AM
WC Douglass M.D.
24 October 2011
Researchers say seniors are hogging up surgeries.
I'm the last person on the planet to defend the mass over-treatment of patients, especially seniors in their final years.
But mark my words on this: The latest pushback on "unnecessary" surgeries won't be used to improve lives -- it'll be used by insurers to save cash, even if it means KILLING old folks in the process.
New numbers in The Lancet show that a third of all Medicare patients over 65 undergo surgery in the last year of life -- including 38 percent of people who were exactly 65.
Read more: http://douglassreport.com/2011/10/24/seniors-hogging-surgeries/
10-24-11, 09:43 AM
Dr. Douglass had several good points, including Medicare denying many procedures.
I hate to say it, but i do think with the baby boomer generation now reaching MediCare age, that we probably are not far from "quality of life" issues deciding if someone should continue to live. It would not surprise me if this were quietly happening already.
Duane's grandma just turned 92. She is wheelchair bound (tho i think that came about for the ease of the home where she is living). She is happy and talkative when her family are with her, but her memory is now of her childhood and when she was a young adult. She also has family that visits frequently, and she is wealthy enough that the family pays for a private nursing home. Not many are in her position. Most of the other people in her home need 100% assistance, and don't have much ability to remember things either.
Without family involved, and without money keeping them, i can't help but wonder how things are going to be when folks have only Social Security and Medicare to support them. This kind of care is very expensive, to the tune of $3,500+ a month. SS won't cover that. How long before someone says, "Yes this person can breathe on their own, but they can't do anything else and their mind is gone and they have no 'quality of life'"?
I'm not advocating this kind of thinking, but it is hard for me to believe that "society" will continue to shoulder the "burden" of caring for people like this. Especially with some people saying that SS is an "entitlement" (overlooking how people PAID into this "entitlement" for so many years).
My first husband was a lot older than i. He was born the first "baby boom" year of 1946. He turned 65 this year. I'm no longer in touch with him, but his history is that "American success story" - he ate the fast food and the junk food and "food" from packets. He was in the military and got all the vaccines (tho probably not as many as Mellowsong). He has taken a number of pharmaceuticals over the years. He has lived the polluted American lifestyle, and it would surprise me very much if he isn't the result of this "American success": Obese (he struggled with weight when i knew him), sick, possibly cancer and/or diabetes, diminished memory/recall.
I'm an advocate for life. Still, i can't help but wonder when the Baby Boomers are really into the system, when the cost of cancer and other medical treatment becomes burdensome, that there will be lines drawn because we "can't afford" to continue to treat, when will the costs overwhelm our society and they will claim we can't treat (or even continue to support) those with "poor quality of life"?
My reason for following the health revolution we talk about here at HH is that i want to LIVE every moment i'm alive. I want to remember things. If possible i want to be ambulatory and to make my own choices. We may have longer lives now (an assertion i question due to dropped infant mortality) but i don't think those lives are healthier than previous generations. I want to do what i can for Duane and myself to be sure that the last years of our lives are still as healthy as possible for us.
10-24-11, 12:10 PM
Well said, Katee. I've come such a long way in the last 5 years and have learned to respect my body and care for it the way some people care for their expensive cars. I feed it hi-test and keep it tuned up, and to be honest, my memory still works and I have loads of energy —didn't get done in the kitchen last night (preserving the harvest) until 11:45 p.m.. I have practically nothing in savings and will never be able to pay for long-term care so I intend to be active until it's time to take me out behind the barn and shoot me. Around the world, in every culture, one thing has always been true: we are what we eat!
10-24-11, 05:48 PM
Not long ago I was in Florida and looked at the obituaries every day in the newspaper. I saw where a lot of younger people had died. Of course they usually do not let one know what the cause of death was. I do believe that the young people of today will not live as long as the baby boomers because of the vaccines and processed foods that go into their bodies. I know I will do my best to stay healthy and out of a nursing home. I see people in nursing homes and I honestly believe if they took care of themselves they would not be there. I see people in their 40's that look and act like they are 70.
My husband and I both agree if we do have to go in a nursing home we will try to starve ourselves, if our brain lets us.
10-24-11, 05:59 PM
I think the chronic illness of young, working age and elderly is the hidden backstory in our economic crisis. Healthcare costs have skyrocketed for all age groups. Our kids are sick, most everyone trying to hold down a job has health problems, and our parents are dealing with illnesses like Alzheimer's. My mother is going to a Memory Care Unit for her Alzheimer's and it runs $80,000 a year plus extras.
Dr. Weston A Price warned against this in 1930-1940's when he saw what processed food was doing to the younger generation. He said there would be more illness, crime, and less productivity which would affect our nation on social, moral, and economic levels.
10-24-11, 06:02 PM
Well said, Katee. I've come such a long way in the last 5 years and have learned to respect my body and care for it the way some people care for their expensive cars. I feed it hi-test and keep it tuned up,
I told my husband I was a Porsche ;-)...RMMM...RMMM.....
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