Over 50 Years, Medicare and Medicaid Evolve, With a Greater Role for Managed Care

(By – Mary K. Caffrey, www.ajmc.com)

With a stroke of a pen, on July 30, 1965, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the law that created Medicare, giving Americans age 65 and older the ability to see a doctor without fear. At the ceremony, Johnson immediately registered 81-year-old former President Harry S Truman and his wife, Bess, giving them the first Medicare cards. The act recognized Truman’s efforts to create universal healthcare—as a US Senator, Truman was aghast at how many young men failed their Army physicals—but it also sent a powerful message after the brutal fight with Congress. The American Medical Association had called Medicare “socialized medicine,” and opponents deemed it “communism.” But if Medicare was good enough for a president, it truly was for everyone. Read more…

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