Sarah Palin’s comments about government rationing leading to “death panels” that would inevitably result in life or death decisions being made by a panel of unelected bureaucrats was laughed at, mocked, scorned, and held up as evidence of her parochial idiocy, hyperbolic extremism, and all purpose buffoonery. For the record, here’s what she said:
The America I know and love is not one in which my parents or my baby with Down Syndrome will have to stand in front of Obama’s “death panel” so his bureaucrats can decide, based on a subjective judgment of their “level of productivity in society,” whether they are worthy of health care. Such a system is downright evil.
Oh that Sarah! She’s such a moron. How does she manage to get out of bed in the morning? There are no such things as “death panels” in the legislation being proposed by Congress. Hahaha
Except the Wall Street Journal editorial page agrees with Sarah while avoiding her incendiary language:
As usual, the most dangerous parts of ObamaCare aren’t receiving the scrutiny they deserve—and one of the least examined is a new commission to tell Congress how to control health spending
New commission you say? Hmm, tell me more…
the various health bills stipulate that Congress will arbitrarily decide how much to spend on health care for seniors every year—and then invest an unelected board with extraordinary powers to dictate what is covered and how it will be paid for.
Well that’s not so bad. No death panels there…
The commission is mandated to go after “sources of excess cost growth,” meaning treatments that are too expensive or whose coverage will boost spending. If researchers find a pricey treatment for Alzheimer’s in 2020, that might be banned because it would add new costs and bust the global budget. Or it might decide that “Maybe you’re better off not having the surgery, but taking the painkiller,” as President Obama put it in June.
Umm… I’m getting a little uncomfortable here…
the Medicare commission would come to function much like the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence, which rations care in England. Or a similar Washington state board created in 2003 to control costs. Its handiwork isn’t pretty…
So far, the commission has banned knee arthroscopy for osteoarthritis, discography for chronic back pain, and implantable infusion pumps for pain not related to cancer. This year, it is targeting such frivolous luxuries as knee replacements, spinal cord stimulation, a specialized autism therapy and MRIs of the abdomen, pelvis or breasts for cancer. It will also rule on routine ultrasounds for pregnancy, which have a “high” efficacy but also a “high” cost.
Currently, the commission is pushing through the most restrictive payment policy in the nation for drug-eluting cardiac stents—simply because bare metal stents are cheaper, even as they result in worse outcomes. If a patient is wheeled into the operating room with chest pains in an emergency, doctors will first have to determine if he’s covered by a state plan, then the diameter of his blood vessels and his diabetic condition to decide on the appropriate stent. If they don’t, Washington will not reimburse them for “inappropriate care.“
So you mean that a panel of unelected bureaucrats will sit and make life and death decisions about who receives what kind of care? Kind of like a death panel?