New year brings chance to have tough conversations

Approximately 2.5 million people will die in the United States in the new year. Of that number, over three-fourths will very likely be over the age of 65. This makes Medicare the largest insurer of health care during the last year of life for an extremely large number of individuals. In 2015, Medicare proposed payment

New rule gives Medicare beneficiaries more control in end-of-life care

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services(CMS) has announced that Medicare will begin paying physicians and other practitioners to discuss advance care planning, effective Jan. 1, 2016.  Advance care planning marks a critical step forward in ensuring that care delivery aligns with individual goals, values and preferences, resulting in better care, higher patient and family satisfaction

Our View: End-of-life care talks key part of health picture

Six years ago, a proposal to compensate physicians for talking to patients about their treatment in their last days was stripped from the Affordable Care Act after critics made dark predictions about “death panels” and government rationing of care to senior citizens. Last week, with little fanfare, the federal government announced that as of Jan.

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