Operating on Medicare

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Despite the ups and downs of the U.S. economy, one business is booming, health care for the aging. Thanks to the staggering advances in medicine, people are living thirty years longer now than they were at the beginning of the 20th century. But with longer life, comes illness, heart disease, Alzheimer’s, or diabetes, conditions that modern medicine cannot cure, but can manage at great public expense.

Yesterday, Medicare approved a sixty thousand dollar surgical procedure that could alleviate the suffering of those with emphysema. That decision has inflamed the debate over whether spending big bucks to buy an extra year or two of life is taxpayer money well spent.


Dr. Sean Tunis, Chief Medical Officer at the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services

Dr. Gail Wilensky, Senior Fellow at Project Hope and former director of the Medicare and Medicaid programs

Dr. Sherwin Nuland, medical historian, best-selling author, and Clinical Professor of Surgery at Yale School of Medicine.