(NaturalNews) Doctors and hospitals in the United States have a financial incentive to perform surgery on dying seniors because Medicare is guaranteed to pay for it, and most of the procedures fail to improve the patients' lives at all.
Several colleagues from the Harvard School of Public Health recently reported that 1.8 million Medicare beneficiaries age 65 or older died in 2008, and over 34% were operated on during their last year, 25% in their last month, and 10% in their last week of life.
Other studies show that just the stress of surgery and poor conditions of hospitals is adding to mortality rates, including post surgery pneumonia and heart attacks. To throw salt in the wound, the nation's 175 lowest quality hospitals are actually the highest cost institutions.
Doctors simply are not having conversations with patients about what they want out of their last days, and probably don't care because of the guaranteed revenue increases they receive from surgery. Most of the unnecessary surgery is a distraction from what is really important to patients, like being able to spend time with their loved ones and have some "quality of life."
The Medicare website for reporting unnecessary and inappropriate surgery describes it as being an operation for a condition that could effectively be treated with medication or physical therapy. Unfortunately, there is nothing listed about nutrition, vitamins, or supplements of any kind. In fact, there is no doctor in the country who can mention natural remedies without endangering his or her license to practice medicine. The FDA outlaws any natural remedy from claiming it can cure a disease, so the general public still believes surgery and chemotherapy are their only options.
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