When healthcare reform was debated across the country in 2009 and 2010, one of the flash points was end-of-life care. Healthcare experts have promoted the use of advance directives, which let doctors know how much treatment is desired by patients at the end of life. While this went too far for some, directives do hold the promise of reducing Medicare costs at the end of life, according to a new study.
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, researchers conducted the analysis. They didn't just look at whether advance directives reduced costs -- they also examined how the directives affected costs in various regions across the country. This place-based approach yielded interesting results.
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