Seniors Take The Cheapest Option


Medicare’s managed care option is growing as the elderly try to save money.  They are doing this knowing that “the tradeoff is much less ability to use their preferred doctors and hospitals.”  They “can review lists of in-network providers before opting into a plan,” but that provider data is often inaccurate.  Even so, they have no problem switching docs. And here is the best part, the Kaiser Family Foundation discovered “shortcomings in the quality of providers in some Medicare Advantage provider networks.”  So, what did we learn here?

  • Medicare patients are cheap.
  • Insurance companies know that.
  • Doctor allegiance doesn’t matter anymore.
  • Insurance companies know that.
  • Quality of providers means nothing.
  • Insurance companies know that.

Got it?

Douglas Farrago MD

Douglas Farrago MD is a full-time practicing family doc in Forest, Va. He started Forest Direct Primary Care where he takes no insurance and bills patients a monthly fee. He is board certified in the specialty of Family Practice. He is the inventor of a product called the Knee Saver which is currently in the Baseball Hall of Fame. The Knee Saver and its knock-offs are worn by many major league baseball catchers. He is also the inventor of the CryoHelmet used by athletes for head injuries as well as migraine sufferers. Dr. Farrago is the author of four books, two of which are the top two most popular DPC books. From 2001 – 2011, Dr. Farrago was the editor and creator of the Placebo Journal which ran for 10 full years. Described as the Mad Magazine for doctors, he and the Placebo Journal were featured in the Washington Post, US News and World Report, the AP, and the NY Times. Dr. Farrago is also the editor of the blog Authentic Medicine which was born out of concern about where the direction of healthcare is heading and the belief that the wrong people are in charge. This blog has been going daily for more than 15 years Article about Dr. Farrago in Doximity Email Dr. Farrago – [email protected] 

  3 comments for “Seniors Take The Cheapest Option

  1. JRDO
    July 12, 2016 at 7:55 pm

    #1,000,001 reason to hate insurance companies: There are now insurance company tele-medicine doctors that patients call to get medical care which includes prescriptions. The cost is about 30-40 dollars to the patient which is not covered by the insurance company itself. So, they cut me out by discouraging office visits via high deductibles and encouraging lower quality care via tele-docs.

  2. Pat
    July 12, 2016 at 10:18 am

    This discussion proceeds form the core structural flaw in Medicare: unrestrained demand in a growing population, with (relatively) decreasing resources. Every senior, politician, and respondent on this blog who wants to be positive, and not scrap the program but “fix the problems” ignores this central reality. Seniors on Medicare are by definition government dependents, and cannot realistically expect to simply get the doctor or hospital of their choice.

  3. Dr Bonz
    July 12, 2016 at 7:13 am

    One clarification. “Quality” (notice the quotation marks) DOES mean something to the insurance companies. Because now, if THEY say you aren’t a “quality” doc, they don’t have to pay you as much (or at all).

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