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December 15, 1956


JAMA. 1956;162(16):1491. doi:10.1001/jama.1956.02970330063022

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To the Editor:—  I should like to point out two errors in the article by Webster and Coffey, "Social Insecurity—The Trap Awaiting the Young M.D.," which appeared in the Sept. 15, 1956, issue of The Journal, page 231. It is stated "you cannot collect both survivors' benefits and retirement benefits. It's one or the other." This is, of course, true. However, no young physician can know which type of benefit he will need, whether he will survive long enough to retire, or whether he will die prematurely. Social security takes care of either eventuality for the single premium. Therefore, the cost of social security should be compared with the cost of commercial survivors' benefits plus retirement benefits, rather than with the cost of each individually, as was done in this article. It is stated "We believe your chances of retiring are less than one in seven... let us look for

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