Some of the Harmful Things Medicare Will Cover in Your Final Years
- Feeding tubes (which can cause infections, nausea and vomiting) rarely prolong life. Patients with dementia often react with agitation, pulling out the tubes. Then, they're often sedated or restrained.
- Abdominal, gall bladder surgery, and joint replacement for elderly who rank poorly on a scale that measures frailty. Those procedures can lead to complications, repeat hospital stays, and placement in nursing homes.
- Tight glycemic control for Type 2 diabetes (already present in 25% of people over 65). This treatment often requires ten years before it helps. So, without having enough time to reap the benefits, the elderly endure needless dietary limits and needle sticks.
- Homemaker services (Licensed) -- $18/hour. Providing "hands-on" care such as helping with cooking and running errands. This is the rate charged by a non-Medicare-certified, licensed agency for these helpers who are sometimes called "personal assistants" or "companions."
- Home Health Aide Servicies (Licensed) -- $19/hour. Providing "hands-on" personal care, but not medical care, in the home with activities such as bathing and dressing. This is the rate charged by a non-Medicare supervised, licensed agency.
- Adult Day Health Care -- $61/day. Provides social and other support services in a community-based protective setting during any part of the day, but less than 24-hour care.
- Assisted Living Facility (One bedroom - single occupancy) - $3,300/month. (Provides "hands-on" personal care as well as medical care for those who are not able to live by themselves but do not require the constant care provided by a nursing home.
- Nursing home (semi-private room) -- $200/day. Provides skilled nursing care 24 hours a day.
- Nursing home (private room) -- $222/day. Provides skilled nursing care 24 hours a day.
These substantial charges are not paid by Medicare. They are left to the elderly (and their adult children) to pay for out of pocket until their pockets are all but empty.