by Jennie Jacobs Kronenfeld
December 2010, 199pp, 6 1/8x9 1/4
1 volume, Greenwood

Hardcover: 978-0-313-36405-1
$45, £35, 40€, A62
eBook Available: 978-0-313-36406-8
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

One of the most important moves an American can make to secure the future is to apply for a Medicare card. Yet, few subjects have engendered, or continue to engender, as much controversy as this 45-year-old program. What do we need to know about Medicare now? What do we need to understand about where it is headed?

Including up-to-date details about Medicare in light of the 2010 Health Care Reform bill, this book will help readers understand past concerns about the program, as well as current issues and ways to address them.

Medicare is an important source of health-care coverage for almost all Americans aged 65 and over. It can also be one of the most confusing subjects with which citizens must contend. Among the first books to examine the impact of the 2010 health-care reforms on the program, Medicare reviews Medicare’s history, explores its current coverages and problems, and takes a look at its probable future.

Readers will learn about attempts to pass Medicare legislation, as well as about many of the important changes that have occurred since 1965. They will read about continuing cost concerns over the years and about modifications in both hospital and physician payment approaches. Critically for today’s readers, the book examines current issues, such as drug coverage, HMO/managed care options, long-term-care coverage, the demographic-based funding crisis, Medicaid, and the impact of recent health-care reforms. The goal throughout is to help consumers understand Medicare so we can insure that the program remains strong.


  • Primary documents detailing parts of the legislation
  • A timeline of events in the history of Medicare
Jennie Jacobs Kronenfeld, PhD, is professor in the sociology program in the School of Social and Family Dynamics (SSFD) at Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ. Dr. Kronenfeld conducts research in medical sociology, especially in health policy, health across the life course, health behavior, and health-care utilization. She coauthored ABC-CLIO's Healthcare Reform In America: A Reference Handbook and authored Expansion of Publicly Funded Health Insurance in the United States: The Children's Health Insurance Program and Its Implications. She is the editor of the Emerald Press Research Annual Series Research in the Sociology of Health Care and is a past chair of the medical sociology section, American Sociological Association, and a fellow of the American Academy of Health Behavior.


"This volume offers good coverage of current debates related to Medicare, including its lack of long-term care options. Summing Up: Recommended."—Choice, September 1, 2011

Health and Medical Issues Today

From the latest developments in treatment to updates on public health threats, information about health and medicine impacts lives more directly than almost any other subject. Despite a wealth of coverage online and in print media, there is still an overwhelming need for a single source to which a reader can turn for accurate, current information on an issue of concern.

The series Health and Medical Issues Today provides just such one-stop resources for those seeking solid overviews of the most controversial and persisting issues in health and psychology. Each volume offers a balanced, in-depth introduction to the medical, scientific, legal, and cultural aspects of subjects ranging from obesity to sports medicine, mental illness, HIV/AIDS, and tobacco use.
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