AUGUST 26 - HEALTH CARE IN RURAL MAINE

 

Guests: David Frum  (speaker)  (Laux), Robin Gilbert  (Laux), Pat Jaeger  (Thrall), Steve Smith  (Wight)

Members We Missed:  Blair, Cole, Dennis, Hart, Murphy, Roma, Steven, Whitney

On Sept. 9, when the District Governor will be attending our morning meeting, there will be a social with other area clubs at Papoose Pond starting at 5:30.  Our club's assignment is to bring salads.

David Frum, CEO of the Bridgton and Rumford hospitals, presented information on the current health care situation and the Affordable Care Act.  He noted that when Medicare and Medicaid came into being in 1965, the ratio of workers to beneficiaries was 5, but that this ratio is now 1.8, highlighting the need to contain costs.  One technique, now in effect, is that Medicare/Medicaid will no longer pay hospitals for extra treatments resulting from a mistake or lack of proper care, and the patient does not have to pay either.  Reduced reimbursements from Medicare/Medicaid have been cited as one of the reasons that some small hospitals have been forced to close.  With respect to whether the Affordable Care Act is reducing the number of uninsured as intended, David thinks it is questionable but probably too early to draw conclusions.