The rumors swirling about health care reform are as sizeable as the 1,000 pages of proposed legislation. Of particular concern to George P. Sillup, Ph.D., assistant professor of pharmaceutical marketing at Saint Joseph's University, is the misinformation floating across the Internet, and over the airways, about how health care reform will affect Medicare.

"Some are spreading a myth that health care reform will repeal Medicare," explains Sillup. "Others have warned that Medicare may be replaced by a managed care ration, neither of which is true."

Sillup fears these kinds of rumors are igniting panic and confusion among a very vulnerable population - seniors citizens. "Seniors will continue to receive conflicting Medicare misinformation from talk shows, political talking heads and through hearsay," warns Sillup. "My advice is to not overreact to information until you have an opportunity to confirm the facts." To get educate yourself on health care reform, Sillup encourages you to visit any of the many available sources, such as factcheck.

The most significant area where Medicare stands to gain, Sillup says, is the prescription drug program. "Medicare Part D, a voluntary prescription drug coverage program established in 2006, will be strengthened through health care reform," he says. "Also, the proverbial donut hole, also called 'the gap' in enrollee coverage, will narrow."

In early November, Sillup and his colleague, Edward R. Balotsky, Ph.D., assistant professor of management, will host an event inviting members of the Philadelphia community to Saint Joseph's campus for dialogue and information about Medicare and health care reform.

Saint Joseph's University

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