According to the New York Times, President Obama will be appointing an experienced and collaborative physician as the new administrator of the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). The article by Robert Pear, Obama Chooses Health Policy Scholar as the Director for Medicare and Medicaid, reported that Donald M. Berwick, M.D. is to be nominated by the President to head CMS, an agency that pays for major amounts of aging parent medical care.
Of significance to aging children who help to support aging parents is that, in addition to his public policy credentials, Dr. Berwick is an articulate advocate for patient-centered medicine. Below is a four-minute You-Tube segment from a July 2009 presentation that he made about what patient-centered care should mean. He addresses issues that are achingly familiar to any aging child who has accompanied an adult parent to a hospital or clinic — how to ensure the dignity of that family member.
Dr. Berwick’s commitment to quality and effectiveness could improve the care that Medicare patients receive.
The United States Senate will need to confirm Dr. Berwick’s nomination. The non-partisan Congressional Research Service, an arm of the Library of Congress, has prepared this overview of the confirmation process.