The problem with a Medicaid obesi-fee
Not surprisingly, it doesn’t appear Arizona officials have figured out exactly how to determine who’s obese or is following a wellness plan. For nursing homes, I fear this may mean installing truck-type scales at the entrance to your facility, or chasing residents around with a body fat caliper.
Remember that this comes from the governor who decided to help balance the budget last year by taking Medicaid patients off organ transplant lists. And it turns out she was right, it did save the state money. Those patients are turning out to be far cheaper now that they’re dead.
Brewer is planning to levy the same fee on smokers, and I hope she doesn’t stop there. Why not also penalize those who don’t drink eight glasses of water a day? Or what about the self-destructive renegades who refuse to consume nearly enough daily fiber?
These are good ideas. I think I’ll plan to personally share them with the Arizona governor. Right after I show her my citizenship papers.
Gary Tetz is multimedia consultant at Consonus Healthcare Services. He was a columnist for I Advance Senior Care / Long-Term Living from 2005-2012.