The health care elephant in the room: Medicare


If you want to read an article on the future of health care in America with a Hollywood ending, stop reading now because this isn't it.

Since we all know Medicare and its sibling Medicaid are financially precarious, perhaps we should fix these existing health care programs before launching any new ones.

Medicare is generally described as a social insurance program administered by the United States Government to provide health insurance coverage to people 65 and over. But it isn't really insurance, and here's why. Insurance is essentially protection against the lottery wheel of life: the cost of fire insurance on our homes is relatively low because only one in a 100 houses will burn down in any given number of years --odds which can be actuarially assessed.

But getting old and dying of some disease or illness is not something that only happens to a few unfortunates -- it happens to all of us. And with modern medicine's constant advances, there is almost always some test, treatment or procedure that can be administered to stem the disease or illness.

Originally published