April 11, 2014
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BLOG: Take control of your Medicare data

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Read more from Darrell E. White

Are you like me? Does discussing income make you uncomfortable? I didn’t learn what my dad made until I was in my 30s, and my kids have no idea how much money I make now or have made in the past. It’s a funny little quirk about our society, I think — and I don’t really think I’m at all unusual in this regard. I always feel like a “peeping Tom” whenever I see a friend’s income published in The Wall Street Journal, for example. I have exactly one friend who knows my income and who shares his (enormous!) income information with me. Even my brother and I have no idea what our respective take-home numbers are.

That has to be part of what makes the publication of how much money Medicare has paid each one of us uncomfortable, don’t you think? That and the fact that a casual reader of the unfiltered data dump this week has no concept of how much of that money actually ends up on our W-2. Ophthalmology was No. 2 on the list of docs “receiving” greater than $3 million from Medicare in 2012. I’m an anterior segment guy, as you know, and my first reaction was, man, that’s a lot of cataract surgery! Get the whole story