Lee Russ

Medicare Advantage: God's gift to insurance companies, not patients

At the same time that more seniors are choosing Medicare Advantage (MA) over traditional Medicare, the very real drawbacks to MA are becoming ever clearer.

Opting for Medicare Advantage (MA) instead of traditional Medicare places decisions about your health in the hands of a big insurance company intent on making a profit: 75% of MA business is in the hands of six huge insurers.

The blizzard of commercials that these insurers fund with their profits tout the MA program as God's gift to seniors. But, unlike actual Medicare, these huge insurers have a great incentive to spend as little as possible on their insureds.

They accomplish this by, among other tactics, requiring that you get approval from them before getting many services, denying many of these requests, and denying or delaying payment to health care providers.

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Every dime the health care industry spends on themselves and their interests comes from us

Hospital executives make big, big salaries. Who pays them? We do. Insurance executives make big, big salaries. Who pays them? We do. Drug company executives make big, big salaries. Who pays them? We do. Drug companies and insurance companies and private equity owners of health care facilities make big...

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Military women do face astounding levels of sexual harassment, assault, and rape

Dan Jeffries asked for Anna Mullany's sources for the statement [“We aren't more civilized in our behavior,” Response, June 1] that “One in three women in the military are raped by fellow service members.” I don't know what Mullany's source is, or whether the correct figure is “one in...

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Does Scott’s economic plan benefit the people he visits?

Thomas Joseph's letter is trying to contrast the two major-party candidates. When he says that Republican Phil Scott has integrity, the implication is that his Democratic opponent, Sue Minter, lacks integrity. To imply anything of the sort, without so much as a hint of evidence to that effect, is a terrible claim to make about a person whose integrity and concern for the public have never been questioned. As for Scott's concern for controlling fraud, let me point out that...

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When literary taste is in dispute

The mind of the reader - it's almost completely beyond the control of the writer. I would add a dire warning to all writers involved with schools and workshops to never forget the need to take that subjectivity into account when evaluating criticism of their work. Both the highest praise and the lowest insult may have more to do with the critic than with the writer. At a well-known workshop, I had my fiction read by two respected writers. They...

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Take a corporation to dinner

People who don't think it's a big deal that corporations have been elevated to the status of a person fail to appreciate history. All the founding fathers, and the country as a whole, were very suspicious of corporations and strictly controlled them. They fail to appreciate the economic power of corporations (many have the wealth of mid-sized nations), and they fail to appreciate the simple fact that corporations are legally bound to further the interests only of their shareholders -

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Shut up and count her blessings?

What to make of Sandy Golden's letter [“People are in greater need of help, so count blessings,” April 20] which basically tells Shela Linton to shut up and count her blessings? I have no idea, though her attitude is unfortunately common. As to Golden's specific claims: I find it hard to believe Sandy Golden “could not qualify” for student loans despite being unable to afford tuition. Student loans are available to almost everyone. Even if she, for some odd reason,

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