Independence, Missouri (JFK+50) President Lyndon B. Johnson signed into law forty-nine years ago today, July 30, 1965, the Medicare Act of 1965.
The historic ceremony took place at the Harry S Truman Library here in Independence.
Not only was the former president on hand for the ceremony, he was the first person to enroll and the first to get his Medicare card.*
Mr. Truman was so honored because he was the first President of the United States to propose a national health insurance program for senior citizens.
Medicare, which was expected to cover 20,000 citizens in 1966, was made available to those who were 65 years of age or older.
The program is funded, like Social Security, by payroll taxes.
*According to the Truman Library, Mr. Truman's card was #1 and former First Lady Bess Truman's card was #2.
I just read a very interesting op-ed piece in the Charleston, S.C. Post and Courier on the Medicare Act written by David S. Ball. He writes...
"Despite its warts and room for improvement, Medicare remains more efficient than private health insurance. Its costs have risen more slowly, and yet it provides better access to care, better financial protection, and higher patient satisfaction.
In contrast to ideological disputes over the Affordable Care Act, Medicare offers 49 years of living proof that public, universal health coverage is superior to private insurance in every way."
"Medicare's success deserves celebration on its 49th birthday," by David S. Ball, R.N. MHA, Post and Courier, July 30, 2014.
FIRST FAMILY ENJOYS SUNDAY ON CAPE COD
Hyannisport, Massachusetts (JFK+50) Fifty-three years ago today, July 30, 1961, President and Mrs. John F. Kennedy enjoyed a typical Sunday here on the Cape with family and friends.
The Kennedys attended mass at St. Francis Xavier Church and spent the afternoon sailing on the Marlin.
Accompanying the First Family were Pat Lawford, daughter Sydney, Eunice Shriver, George Thomas, JFK's valet and James Rowley, Director of the Secret Service.
The President also found time to go for a golf cart ride to the beach with his children.
JFK and Children on the Golf Cart
PRESIDENT NIXON VISITS SAIGON
Saigon, South Vietnam (JFK+50) Forty-five years ago today, July 30,. 1969, just six months after being sworn in as the 37th President of the United States, Richard M. Nixon made a brief stop here in the capital city of South Vietnam.
Mr. Nixon was on his first overseas trip as POTUS.
The President met with President Nguyen Van Thieu of South Vietnam to discuss withdrawals of United States military personnel.
The President also met with American military commanders as well as troops from the 1st Infantry Division.