- Our Party
NY Times: Obama health plan denies care to the terminally ill
Posted on Apr 30, 2009
Is this "cruelty you can believe in?"
In an interview with the New York Times, Barack Obama commented on one of the more controversial aspects of his plan to eventually end all private health insurance plans and have the government run health care -- the fact that much of his promised savings would be realized simply by denying most medical procedures to the terminally ill.
According Obama's example, if someone has been diagnosed with terminal cancer, for example, the government should deny most treatments to the patient, including badly needed procedures unrelated to the terminal illness.
In fact, Obama's example was his own grandmother, who broke her hip while undergoing treatment for cancer. Obama openly admitted that while wealthy milionaires such as himself would be allowed to buy hip replacements with cash, a patient with terminal cancer and no access to money with their private insurance now ended would have to spend his or her final months in agony suffering from an untreated broken hip, as well.
“I don’t know how much that hip replacement cost,” Mr. Obama said in the interview with David Leonhardt of The Times. “I would have paid out of pocket for that hip replacement, just because she’s my grandmother. Whether, sort of in the aggregate, society making those decisions to give my grandmother, or everybody else’s aging grandparents or parents, a hip replacement when they’re terminally ill is a sustainable model is a very difficult question.”
He went on to say: “If somebody told me that my grandmother couldn’t have a hip replacement and she had to lie there in misery in the waning days of her life, that would be pretty upsetting.” That did not stop Obama, however, from forcing that reality on millions of Americans. His own chief advisor, Lawrence Summers, admitted on Meet The Press the Obama health care socialization plan saves money mostly by denying people needed medical care.
In other rationed-care systems like the one Obama proposes, those with serious illnesses and the elderly are the first to be told they basically have a duty to the government to save money dying as soon as possible.
“To me, Obama is laying out the intellectual case for health care rationing while acknowledging the potential human costs of such a policy,” wrote Matthew Continetti on the Web site of the Weekly Standard magazine. “He’s saying that, in order to contain costs, under a universal health care program his grandmother might have been denied that hip replacement, or forced to pay for it herself. This is the natural consequence of a universal policy, which would bankrupt the country without some form of rationing care.”