Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Is this part of Government Run Health Care?

This article is appalling
I'm reminded of the account in Exodus of the king telling the Israelite midwives to kill the baby boys. In my opinion there isn't a huge stretch between what the king of Egypt did and what the president of Uzbekistan is doing.

I don't think there really is any debate about the inhumanity of forced sterilization. So the real question is posed in the title of this post: Is this part of Government Run Health Care? The article mentions that doctors are penalized if they are unable to convince two women a month into sterilization. I know under ObamaCare doctors are penalized for referring too many patients for specialized treatments and incentives are in place for essentially saving money. Well in the health care arena the way to save money is to deny testing or deny treatment or both. Do you want to see a doctor who gets a bonus if he doesn't do an expensive test? Or if he fails to mention an experimental treatment?
Don't get me wrong, I'm all about saving money! I'm more than happy to buy the generic crackers, ride coach in the airplane and buy clothes second hand. The difference is I get to decide when it's worth skimping to save a buck. Yeah I'm willing to buy the generic ritz crackers cause the taste the same, but the generic oreos just don't cut it and I'll pay full price because it's worth it to me. This is a simplistic example, but that's how I see the whole health care thing. If I have cancer shouldn't it be my right to decide what, if any, treatments I take? Shouldn't I have the right to know about any and all options, even the ones that would cost the moon? Shouldn't my years of hard work and money saving be able to buy me the health care that could save my life?
Oh I'm aware of the argument that the health care bill opens up these options for those who could otherwise not afford it. Yeah it sounds good, but in practice that's not the reality. The reality, as we've seen in other countries, is that there is only so much money to go around. To make that money stretch as much as possible procedures are denied, corners are cut and someone has to decide the worth of treating individuals. Who is it that gets to decide if grandma gets a lung transplant? It no longer will matter if she can raise the money, has good insurance or savings, it now is up to someone(s) who control the budget. How do you decide who gets saved and who doesn't?
Yes, I'd love it if every human being on the planet could afford to get the best health care available, that's not reality. That never will be reality. The best thing we can do is torte reform to bring the cost of medical care down to reasonable levels. Yes, the poor will still have a hard time getting good medical care, but do you really think that ObamaCare is going to give them good medical care? Ask all the Canadians that cross our borders for medical reasons.
a McKinsey and Co. report from 2008 found that a plurality of an estimated 60,000 to 85,000 medical tourists were traveling to the United States for the purpose of receiving in-patient medical care


OpenID thoughtfulbirth said...

Indeed. And in a free country of not so long ago where the answer was not "Well, the government should do something about that," but "Oh my goodness! I can take care of that," we had charity hospitals; and doctors negotiated payment individually, or took barter payment, or even said "You know what? Don't worry about it."

June 26, 2010 5:51 PM  

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