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Hospice firms draining
billions from Medicare

Washington Post, by Peter Whoriskey & Dan Keating

Original Article

Posted By:StormCnter, 12/27/2013 5:17:49 AM

Hospice patients are expected to die: The treatment focuses on providing comfort to the terminally ill, not finding a cure. To enroll a patient, two doctors certify a life expectancy of six months or less. But over the past decade, the number of “hospice survivors” in the United States has risen dramatically, in part because hospice companies earn more by recruiting patients who aren’t actually dying, a Washington Post investigation has found. Healthier patients are more profitable because they require fewer visits and stay enrolled longer. The proportion of patients who were discharged alive from hospice care rose about 50 percent

      


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Reply 1 - Posted by: Grace1798, 12/27/2013 5:59:22 AM     (No. 9669138)

I have a friend who has a mother 94 in a nursing home. Seems that ever since he put her in there, she´s been asleep every time they go to visit. What is really suspicious is that all the rest of the elderly in there are also asleep, even though they assure the visitors that they WERE awake earlier. I tried to warn them about this and encourage them to investigate but they won´t do anything. Welcome to the destruction and overspending of Medicare. Unnecessary spending for corruption of all kinds.

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Reply 2 - Posted by: LoneVoice, 12/27/2013 5:59:58 AM     (No. 9669139)

This is just another article trying to advocate for single payor healthcare. Medicare for-profit-providers are supposedly rife with fraud so we should turn all our healthcare over to the government.
Our government has proven itself incompetent in running healthcare for the elderly. So now we should Turn over everybody´s healthcare to the government.

Any at home healthcare is a darn sight cheaper than nursing home care. These hospice companies Are saving Medicare far more than they cost by that fact alone. But The Washington Post has its agenda.

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Reply 3 - Posted by: geo11, 12/27/2013 6:31:18 AM     (No. 9669151)

My mother had hospice care at home. She passed away less than two weeks from enrollment. They were wonderful and she died peacefully at home. The Comfort Care package of medications that I helped administer eased her journey. It was a blessing to have their assistance.

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Reply 4 - Posted by: Jethro bo, 12/27/2013 6:32:31 AM     (No. 9669153)

I fully expect Obambi and the Dems to demand death panels for Hospice patients cause lets face it they just aren´t dying fast enough. Even the terminal must be terminal in a jiffy for Dems. Sure some folks live linger but how easy is it to predict death? And yes more are getting signed up cause it wasn´t long ago that very few used hospice. So the more signed up the greater the chance of getting folks that don´t die soon enough for goobernment bean counters. Having had experience with a love one and hospice, it is one of the most humane and caring part of healthcare. It does a lot of good despite this attempt to make it appear to be evil and greedy.

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Reply 5 - Posted by: Charactercounts, 12/27/2013 6:43:30 AM     (No. 9669165)

My mother, too, had hospice care at home until she was too ill. She was then moved to a well-regarded hospice care hospital.

She lived for four months, spending the last 6+ weeks nearly comatose. She was wonderfully cared for, and we are grateful for that.

Imagine our surprise when the hospital insurance refused to pay for almost three months of her stay. The reason? They told me she didn´t die quickly enough.

That was in the late 80s. Imagine what Obamacare will do.

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Reply 6 - Posted by: Keekng, 12/27/2013 7:45:09 AM     (No. 9669238)

Once obamacare is firmly in place, death panels under the guidance of Dr Mengele.....er, uh,I mean, Dr Emmanuel should bring the cost down.

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Reply 7 - Posted by: AGGW, 12/27/2013 8:39:18 AM     (No. 9669307)

Our family has refused hospice care. Too many offer the New Age spiritualism instead of God centered counseling. Not what we wanted for someone on the door step of a face to face meeting with God.

This does explain why we have felt hospice rushed the death of some.

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Reply 8 - Posted by: 6079 Smith, W, 12/27/2013 9:53:22 AM     (No. 9669402)

Hasn´t the main argument the Dems have pushed since before Hillarycare been that health care is a right? So why are they complaining about elder health care expense if they truly believe it is a right? The answer, of course, is that it has never been about health care.

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Reply 9 - Posted by: oh-heck, 12/27/2013 10:58:17 AM     (No. 9669544)

A terminally ill patient in a hospital is largely ignored except to wake them regularly to monitor their vitals. Get them to a quiet hospice or home where the focus is on their comfort, and it is not surprising many improve.

The part of the article saying hospices are draining billions from Medicare is just the squeal of pigs at the trough.

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Reply 10 - Posted by: Linda in Seattle, 12/27/2013 1:28:27 PM     (No. 9669781)

A real example of why the Chamber of Commerce is going to spend $50 million to crush the Tea Party.

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Reply 11 - Posted by: Labrador Heaven, 12/27/2013 2:45:33 PM     (No. 9669898)

We have inpatient hospice beds on our unit, supposedly servicing only patients from our core services at end stage. They took 2 beds from our room population, we always in need of those beds as we serve chronic CHF and LVAD, transplants, etc. The beds they are "renting" from our hospital sit empty until a few trickle through, but many are now on vents, require more than just hospice care and their nurses are not equipped or trained to deal with the conditions that led them to hospice. In other words, they are a making a mint making them "better" for a lengthy period of time and then, they are sent back on the regular floor with us, with all the interventions we must do until they are again made a full DNR-CC only. It´s confusing for family, as they anticipate a better outcome. It´s just the care the patient or family declined to have done in the first place before going the hospice route. At-home hospice is the way to go, and never while intubated.

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