Not only have the elderly benefited but the existing health care system has flourished with Medicare. In the years immediately following introduction of Medicare, evidence began to accumulate that more than an infusion of money was necessary to improve health care. The documentary history of Medicare reveals serious flaws in regard to cost and quality control. Reports of the Health Insurance Benefits Advisory Council, Congressional groups, the General Accounting Office, and other agencies pinpointed specific deficiencies and recommended changes. Response to these recommendations has been slow. Quality and cost control mechanisms of most current third-party payors and provider-groups have proved inadequate.
Quality and cost control measures in Medicare are inextricably linked. While good modern health care is expensive, several irrationalities in the present health care system both add to the cost and detract from the quality of care provided in Medicare.
Several action recommendations are offered.
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