by William Teach | July 9, 2015 7:11 am
Some people have been complaining about these non-existent and mythical Death Panels. Huh
(LA Times) Six years after end-of-life planning nearly derailed development of the Affordable Care Act amid charges of “death panels,” the Obama administration has revived a proposal to reimburse physicians for talking with their Medicare patients about how patients want to be cared for as they near death.
The proposal, contained in a large set of Medicare regulations unveiled Wednesday, comes amid growing public discussion about the need for medical care that better reflects patients’ wishes as they get older.
Two months ago, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, one of the front-runners for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016, suggested that Medicare patients should sign so-called advance directives that spell out the care they want if they become incapacitated.
It’s interesting that they throw in Jeb! Bush’s suggestion, which really has little to do with these so-called death panels. Sounds like he was suggesting that people sign a living will (hey, I have one, even though I’m not on Medicare).
The new proposal from the Department of Health and Human Services would not require Medicare patients to sign any order or even to talk with their physicians about end-of-life care.
Rather, the proposed regulation would allow medical providers to bill Medicare for “advance-care planning” should a patient want to have the discussion.
Having doctors talk to their patients about how they want to be cared for was never a big issue. What was a big issue was having doctors discuss ways to end lives with the patients, ie, doctor assisted suicide.
Furthermore, these were just a small part the “death panels” that Sarah Palin brought up. In fact, what she was referring to were Government run panels which decided exactly what care citizens would receive, and whether citizens were worth advanced care, such as whether an older patient was worth a knee replacement, or should just be given a cane and some meds. Here’s what she wrote at the time
The Democrats promise that a government health care system will reduce the cost of health care, but as the economist Thomas Sowell has pointed out, government health care will not reduce the cost; it will simply refuse to pay the cost. And who will suffer the most when they ration care? The sick, the elderly, and the disabled, of course. 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.
The system was compared to that in the UK, which often determines whether a person is worthy of certain medical care, or they should be given less care based on whether you are worth it.
And there is an actual “death panel”: the Independent Payment Advisory Board, a group of individuals tasked with determining Medicare rates without the need to go to Congress, though Congress can override their decisions. There is a concern that they could limit access to care for seniors, cut payments for services, and is unresponsive to the American People. That’s per the American Medical Association, a big backer of Ocare. This easily could lead to rationing of service, especially as cost for the entire Ocare program spiral out of control.
Crossed at Pirate’s Cove. Follow me on Twitter @WilliamTeach.
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