April 13, 2012 | 58 comments
March 27, 2012 | 32 comments
March 21, 2012 | 21 comments
March 9, 2012 | 91 comments
February 24, 2012 | 56 comments
Suddenly, end of life care is back in vogue among Obamacare givers.
(Page 2 of 2)
Because keeping people alive longer is so…wasteful, Fuchs suggests government discourage “innovations that increase life expectancy” in favor of “innovations, such as joint replacement, that improve the quality of life for both the elderly and the near-elderly.”
This is ideology masquerading as science. In fact, advances that improve quality of life also tend to improve survival, especially when it comes to diseases associated with aging. And it winds up reducing or slowing the cost of treatment. Since 1996, the average per patient costs for cancer, heart disease, and mental illness have declined in inflation adjusted dollars. And life expectancy continues to increase as well.
But that’s not good enough for Fuchs, Berwick, and others. And just because end of life counseling is gone, Obamacare has other tools to shorten life. Hospice care is being cut under Medicare. Another way to shorten life is to have the government not pay for any new technology that doesn’t meet this goal. Still another is not to count spending on such innovations when determining if a health plan spent the federally required 80-85 percent of its premiums on medical care.
Steering people to use fewer life-extending innovations based on what the government thinks is valuable is the defining function of Obamacare. As Fuchs states: the government should only pay for “innovations whose main effect is to substantially decrease cost while holding quality constant or reducing it only slightly.” The combination of palliative and standard care for end stage lung cancer patients would not meet that government set criterion.
Reduce quality and discourage people from living longer? Maybe the term “Death Panels” isn’t so inaccurate after all.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?