Thursday, September 18, 2008


“Who are you nattering nabobs talking to?” Spiro A. from Maryland … is the question that should have scrolled across the Medicare launch web cast today for


Anyone gets a point for effort so auto point for US Government. Where have you been, may or may not be a fair question. Caregiving is not new. However this is a step in the right direction.


The one thing the web cast did repeatedly return to and I 100% endorse is the need for information for caregivers. I would encourage caregivers and future caregivers to check out this new Medicare Caregiver site on your own without the talking heads.


As a spouse caregiver of 19 years I found the web cast remarks, mini-speeches, and “filtered” questions and answers to be condescending, and patronizing.


What do “knowing” smiles and words have to do with an exchange about what can you do to get a caregiver to accept help? How about half the people sitting there talking try rolling up your sleeves and go help someone? I would bet there are countless people and caregivers needing help within blocks of the web cast.


When acting Medicare Director Kerry Weems spin doctored his answer to the question “Can Medicare help with homecare”? I turned the web cast off. ANY caregiver knows the real answer is NO. Spin doctored it becomes “Yes, in some situations such as prescribed physical therapy … the therapy must be performed by an approved therapist” yada yada … Or, as a disabled American lies on their bathroom floor from an unattended fall smeared in their own feces or urine because Medicare will not help with attended care, Kerry Weems, Acting Administrator of CMS will authorize payment for a Medicare approved physical therapist to futilely ring the door bell.


There is no magic bullet for caregiving rather it is about your true grit. We all know the frustrations with our federal government when it comes to helping anyone, yet the one thing they do well is collect information. “Ask Medicare / Caregivers” is a long overdue and welcomed jumping off point for anyone’s journey into caregiving.


Caregivingly Yours, J Patrick Leer 




(also available in Blogger edition, Caregiver Blog: "Caregivingly Yours")


  1. well, at least it is a start!!! I'm sure it will continue to have to be addressed in this day and age with so many of us getting in that age group that may be needing caregiving or may be caregivers as the baby boomers continue to age; one can only hope continued efforts to improve care/reimbursement, etc will happen


  2. (((((((((((((((HUGSOYOU))))))))))))))))))))))Caregiving is very important that everyone needs to know what goes on.

  3. With out getting into all the details a few years ago my wife of 45 years old very active suffered a car accident, creating a herniated disk in her lower back. Surgery was necessary. So of course one was performed. While performing the surgery bone deterioration in this same area was ongoing. So the disk at question was worked on, with the knowledge that further surgery would be needed. Making a long story short pins were placed in certain areas, and then another surgery with the same. Now after eight years of bent over on a walker an wheel chair exscruciating pain. Her Dr discovers a miscalculation involving an oversight in the last surgery he preformed on her leaving a very weak vertebrae unpinned which left her totally disabled, and now that medicaid is picking up the tab decides on a MRI reaching his new findings. How ever extensive physical therapy and years of retraining to walk and recovery are in store, which still doesn't guarenttee other bone won't give out by then. So my wife was a full time Dental Assistant for a prominent Dr. for 12 years has been handed down without retirement and I owning my own business at the time after 10 years was just getting it in full gear, was forced to sell out take plenty lss than it's net worth, To not only provide with raising my to teen aged daughters yet total around the clock attention to my wives most unjustified condition. I haven't been able to take on full time work, in fact my full time job was providing for her and my daughters, which are now married with children. Each of us have made major sacrifices in our lives, and only the last five years with any income at all, finding ourselves and our daughters at one time totally broke and homeless, losing our house for lack of payment, kicked to the streets like dogs with no more than a common, eviction from a lady we thought was a honest school teacher unwise to the laws at that time were lead to believe we were breach of a contract after paying 5000$ cash and 48,000 in payments more than the house was appraised for. The disability check my wife now receives, is less than 700$ a month. We have verily lived on only that now for 5 years. When asking if there was any compensation, for my time in caregiving for my wife I was told, well, lots of things, but never offered anymore than food assistance. We can't even afford a car. So are dependent on our daughter for transportation, which doesn't happen often. Not to say we couldn't get a in home care giver from medicaid, but then in my trade. I've tried to re- enter but my age, I'm stopped at the door with looks that I understand are trying to say don't be a fool or waste our time and yours. So I provide all the care but we get no giving. I feel that even now I'm wasting my time writing this, because I have very little faith in a beuracacy that never gives answers, only questions my validity while suppressing the problem for mere unattainable funds.

    4 down cash it was discovered that bone deterioration was

  4. All reposting to my comment, can be sent to my email address thank you for your time, comments, and concerns.


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