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March 21, 1966

The Medical Society and Long-Term Patient Care

JAMA. 1966;195(12):1073-1074. doi:10.1001/jama.1966.03100120141056

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To the Editor:—  A question sometimes overlooked among patients with long-term illness is whether those needing medical or nursing support are receiving it in the proper place at the proper time. As the variety of available services becomes greater and their costs mount, it is correspondingly important to have an effective review process in operation.Rising costs of long-term patient care are inevitable in meeting demands for improvement in the quality of care. Medicare legislation is probably the most compelling force in this change because, almost for the first time, a third party payer has indicated that good quality care is the desired goal, and that reasonable costs will be paid. The Medicare program includes payment for home health services in an effort to broaden the range of support. It is probable that this action arises from the expectation that patients presently receiving nursing-home care might be able to be

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