Death panels...coming to your town

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-07-2010
Death panels...coming to your town
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Thu, 07-08-2010 - 5:31pm

Obama's Nominee to Run Medicare: 'The Decision is Not Whether or Not We Will Ration Care--The Decision is Whether We Will Ration Care With Our Eyes Open'

(CNSNews.com) – President Barack Obama’s nominee to head the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which runs Medicare, is a strong supporter of the government-run health care system in Britain, who said in a 2009 interview about Comparative Effectiveness Research: “The decision is not whether or not we will ration care--the decision is whether we will ration with our eyes open.”

The $787-billion stimulus law signed by President Obama created a Federal Coordinating Coucil for Comparative Effectivieness research in health care that some critics argue was a step toward rationing of heatlh care in the United States.

Donald Berwick, a professor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical School and the head of the non-profit Institute for Healthcare Improvement, was nominated by Obama on April 19, 2010.

In choosing Berwick, the Obama administration is implicitly admitting that the health care law passed by the Democrats in March will lead to the rationing of health care, said Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) in a May 19 press release.

Concerning Berwick’s 2009 comment about the rationing of health care, the White House released a statement to several news organizations in which spokesman Reid Cherlin said the following:

“No one is surprised that Republicans plan to use this confirmation process to trot out the same arguments and scare tactics they hoped would block health insurance reform. The fact is, rationing is rampant in the system today, as insurers make arbitrary decisions about who can get the care they need. Don Berwick wants to see a system in which those decisions are transparent– and that the people who make them are held accountable.”

The White House statement, according to Roberts, seemed to acknowledge that the new health care law would simply ration care in a transparent way.

“This is really a fascinating response. Instead of flat out denials of government rationing we have excuses,” Roberts said on the Senate floor on May 19.

“And if you read between the lines you will notice that for the first time ever in this debate the Obama White House is admitting that their health care plan will ration health care,” the senator said.

Roberts made it clear that he does not accept health care rationing “transparent or otherwise.”

“I am opposed to rationing whether it is done by the government or by an insurance company,” said Roberts. “I am not defending any of the practices of insurance companies who have unjustly denied claims. But the Obama Administration’s response does nothing to address my concerns that our government will ration care. Instead, we finally have an admission from the White House that this is what they plan to do.”

In a June 2009 interview in Biotechnology Healthcare, Berwick was asked: "Critics of CER (Comparative Effectiveness Research) have said that it will lead to rationing of health care."

He answered: "We can make a sensible social decision and say, 'Well, at this point, to have access to a particular additional benefit is so expensive that our taxpayers have better use for those funds.' We make those decisio all the tim. The decision is not whether or not we will ration care--the decision is whether we will ration with our eyes open."

In the same interview, he also said, “The social budget is limited—we have a limited resource pool. It makes terribly good sense to at least know the price of an added benefit, and at some point we might say nationally, regionally, or locally that we wish we could afford it, but we can’t.”

Berwick also talked about his romantic view of Britain’s socialized health care system on page 213 of a report he wrote entitled, “A Transatlantic Review of the NHS at 60,” published on July 26, 2008.

“Cynics beware: I am romantic about the National Health Service; I love it,” Berwick wrote. “All I need to do to rediscover the romance is to look at health care in my own country.”

In the same article, he wrote, “The NHS is one of the astounding human endeavors of modern times. … It’s easier in the United States because we do not promise health care as a human right.”

He further wrote, “Any health care funding plan that is just, equitable, civilized, and humane must – must – redistribute wealth from the richer among us to the poorer and less fortunate.”

Roberts said he personally did not understand this romantic view of socialized medicine.

“With cancer survival rates for women 10 percentage points higher in the U.S. than in England, and over 20 points higher for men, why does he think that their government-run system is superior to our system?” said Roberts.

“Limited resources require decisions about who will have access to care and the extent of their coverage,” Berwick wrote in the Jan. 27, 1999 edition of Nursing Standard.

“The complexity and cost of healthcare delivery systems may set up a tension between what is good for the society as a whole and what is best for an individual patient,” Berwick wrote in an article entitled, “A Shared Statement of Ethical Principle.”

“Hence, those working in health care delivery may be faced with situations in which it seems that the best course is to manipulate the flawed system for the benefit of a specific patient or segment of the population, rather than to work to improve the delivery of care for all. Such manipulation produces more flaws, and the downward spiral continues.”

http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/66465

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iVillage Member
Registered: 07-07-2010
Sun, 07-11-2010 - 1:05am

<>

>>> So health care is not a budget concern for insurance companies? They're just offering coverage out of the goodness of their hearts?

No, healthcare isn't a "budget" concern for insurance companies, it's a "profit vs expense" concern.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-26-2009
Sun, 07-11-2010 - 2:04am

Funding care is not the same thing as providing care.


Would you consider Medicare to be an example of single-payer? Do you see a difference between single-payer and 'socialized medicine'?


Chrissy


iVillage Member
Registered: 05-26-2009
Sun, 07-11-2010 - 2:25am

<>


>>> Nope, I was not aware of that? Can you provide sources?


<>


You made the claim. Back it up.


>>> Are we talking true amnesty or rather, a path to citizenship?


<>


Amnesty would be a blanket pardon for all illegals.

Chrissy


iVillage Member
Registered: 05-26-2009
Sun, 07-11-2010 - 2:34am

<>





Oh well, that's completely different. Actually, that's a little more concerning when you think about it. If the government was collecting taxes to pay for a single-payer healthcare system, obviously they'd want to be collecting enough revenues to pay for the care. The insurance companies of course want the same thing but then, they also want a profit. Without a profit, what would be the point of them being in business? So if anything, they'd have a bigger incentive to cut costs and ration care.


Chrissy


iVillage Member
Registered: 07-07-2010
Sun, 07-11-2010 - 4:42am

>>> Funding care is not the same thing as providing care.

Obviously.

>>> Would you consider Medicare to be an example of single-payer? Do you see a difference between single-payer and 'socialized medicine'?

Yes...and no.

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-07-2010
Sun, 07-11-2010 - 5:35am

<>

>>> Oh well, that's completely different.

It is completely different actually.

>>> Actually, that's a little more concerning when you think about it.

Not really. The insurance company provides a service...the limits of which are laid out in the contract. If you want more service you pay more...if they don't live up to the contract you can sue. Pretty cut and dry.

>>> If the government was collecting taxes to pay for a single-payer healthcare system, obviously they'd want to be collecting enough revenues to pay for the care.

Sure...but the difference is that the government would be collecting more and more taxes from the top 10% to provide for the bottom 50%.

>>> The insurance companies of course want the same thing but then, they also want a profit. Without a profit, what would be the point of them being in business? So if anything, they'd have a bigger incentive to cut costs and ration care.

Actually, no. Health insurance companies operate at a surprisingly low 3.2% profit margin. When the insurance company's expenses increase, so do their fees, to maintain a profit percentage, or they can increase customers without increasing fees to maintain their profit margin...in either case, the level of care is maintained. Not so with the government...and hence the problem with healthcare being a budget item. When the cost of healthcare exceeds the budget allotment, the government will either try to raise taxes, inevitably on the most productive members of society, which isn't popular and will have a negative impact on the economy...or they can make cuts...which happened recently in Britain. Cuts equal diminished care. A simple examination of ANY government run program will show that it is inefficient, overly expensive and unsustainable over time.

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-07-2010
Sun, 07-11-2010 - 5:51am

<>

>>> Nope, I was not aware of that? Can you provide sources?

<>

>>> You made the claim. Back it up.

It's well reported, just take a read of any article concerning "comprehensive immigration reform." If you're not interested, don't bother educating yourself.

>>> Are we talking true amnesty or rather, a path to citizenship?

<>

>>> Amnesty would be a blanket pardon for all illegals. When I refer to a "path to citizenship" I mean a method in which immigrants who are currently in the US illegally can go about becoming citizens without starting from scratch. Does that make sense?

No, it makes no sense at all. Starting from "scratch" means being deported...and applying from your mother country for immigrant status in the US and then going through all of the hoops to earn citizenship. That is the TRUE "back of the line" reality...but it's NOT what the Dems are referring to when they talk about "path to citizenship."

>>> What I mean is, of course there should be some repercussions for being in the country illegally

Yeah, it's called deportation.

>>> they should have to pay a fine, back taxes, etc. but they should be allowed to remain in this country why they are going through the citizenship process.

Crock all around. First of all, how are illegal immigrants going to get the money for the fine? It's been described as around $3500 per illegal. Right...they can't. CROCK! Second...illegals don't file taxes, so how does the government know what they owe in back taxes? Right...they don't. CROCK! And "remain in this country why they are going through the citizenship process" is rewarding the crime they committed and is an insult to the people who go through the process to enter this country legally. What you describe is anything but "back of the line" and is, in fact, an amnesty...with a few caveats thrown in that will obviously be waived. As I said, liberals "comprehensive immigration reform" is a CROCK!

>>> And free health insurance, really? Who's offering free health insurance?

<>

<<< Proof please.

Obama refuses to secure the border unless he can package that with amnesty in the same "comprehensive immigration reform" bill. Republicans know that passing such a bill will give immediate amnesty, but as they did with Reagan, the Dems won't carry out their promise to secure the border...so the Republicans are refusing to play Obama's game.

Again, this is all recent news and well reported...at least on Fox, if not other lame-street media outlets. Google a bit...get informed.

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-07-2010
Sun, 07-11-2010 - 5:54am
You have recourse because the government isn't the entity that is providing the insurance/funding for the medical treatment. Once single-payer is in place...which is Obama's ultimate goal...the only recourse you'll have is to appeal to the government for redress against bad deeds committed by the government. Good luck with that.
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-26-2009
Sun, 07-11-2010 - 9:27am

>>> Would you consider Medicare to be an example of single-payer? Do you see a difference between single-payer and 'socialized medicine'?


<>


Well then, would Tricare also be an example of a single-payer system?


<>


That explains a lot. Single payer and socialized are not exactly the same thing. A single-payer system refers to the funding where as a truly socialized system would mean that hospitals are owned and operated by, and doctors are employed by, the government. If you consider Medicare to be an example of single-payer than the VA system would be an example of socialized.


Chrissy


iVillage Member
Registered: 05-26-2009
Sun, 07-11-2010 - 9:32am

So you don't think that the current private system is inefficient, overly expensive, and unsustainable over time?


Chrissy


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