Jackpine Elders

Misconceptions About Health Costs When You’re Older

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      eridani
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      https://www.nytimes.com/2018/12/24/upshot/misconceptions-about-health-costs-when-youre-older.html

      “This shows that it’s just very hard to know in advance who will die soon with much certainty,” said Amy Finkelstein, an M.I.T. economist and an author of the study. “That makes it infeasible to make a big dent in health care spending by cutting spending on patients who are almost certain to die soon.”

      “There absolutely is waste in the system,” said Ashish Jha, director of the Harvard Global Health Institute. But, he argues, waste is present throughout the life span, not just at the end of life: “We have confused that spending as end-of-life spending is somehow wasteful. But that’s not right because we are terrible at predicting who is going to die.”

      Of course, beyond any statistical analysis, there are actual people involved, and wrenching individual decisions that need to be made.

      “We should do all we can to push waste out of the system,” Dr. Jha said. “But spending more money on people who are suffering from an illness is appropriate, even if they die.”

      Jesus: Hey, Dad? God: Yes, Son? Jesus: Western civilization followed me home. Can I keep it? God: Certainly not! And put it down this minute--you don't know where it's been! Tom Robbins in Another Roadside Attraction

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