The Spectacle Blog

Read the Bill?

By on 8.17.09 | 8:10AM

Even if you read the bill you won’t understand it. It is written exactly to hide what it is they are doing.

There is one provision that gives the Secretary the power to reduce payment to any cancer treatment center that has above average charges. That is a pretty neat trick by itself, since any “average” requires things that are higher than average and lower than average. If you eliminate everything that is above average, what happens to the average?

But, right after this provision are three paragraphs exempting three facilities from the provision. Here is one of them --

<!-- /* Font Definitions */ @font-face {font-family:"Times New Roman"; panose-1:0 2 2 6 3 5 4 5 2 3; mso-font-charset:0; mso-generic-font-family:auto; mso-font-pitch:variable; mso-font-signature:50331648 0 0 0 1 0;} /* Style Definitions */ p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal {mso-style-parent:""; margin:0in; margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:12.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman";} table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-parent:""; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman";} @page Section1 {size:8.5in 11.0in; margin:1.0in 1.25in 1.0in 1.25in; mso-header-margin:.5in; mso-footer-margin:.5in; mso-paper-source:0;} div.Section1 {page:Section1;} -->

“A hospital that was recognized as a comprehensive cancer center or clinical cancer research center by the National Cancer Institute of the National Institutes of Health as of April 20, 1983, that is located in a State which, as of December 19, 1989, was not operating a demonstration project under section 1814(b), that applied and was denied, on or before December 31, 1990, for classification as a hospital involved extensively in treatment for or research on cancer under this clause (as in effect on the day before the date of the enactment of this subclause), that as of the date of the enactment of this subclause, is licensed for less than 50 acute care beds, and that demonstrates for the 4-year period ending on December 31, 1996, that at least 50 percent of its total discharges have a principal finding of neoplastic disease, as defined in subparagraph (E).”

I doubt there is anyone in America who can identify what hospital that is -- except the Congressman who wrote it and the person who bribed him to insert it.

This is one paragraph of a 1,000 page bill that is chock full of similar shenanigans.

Like this Article

Print this Article

Print Article

More Articles From Greg Scandlen