Author Topic: Palin appearing more and more the Prophet as older UK cancer patients are increasingly shunned  (Read 441 times)

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Offline happyg

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By David C. Jennings
Former Alaska Governor and Vice-Presidential candidate Sarah Palin caused quite the stir in 2009 when, in challenging the drafting of the Affordable Care Act, she stated that the bill would create a “death panel” of bureaucrats who would decide whether Americans—such as her elderly parents or children with certain disabilities were “worthy of medical care”.

But critics like Palin had already viewed Britain’s National Health Service (NHS) and its cost-effectiveness analysis to determine whether new treatments and drugs should be available to those covered by under the NHS.The Daily Telegraph took note and the Sunday Times wrote that Sarah Palin’s use of the “death panels” term was a reference to NICE (National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence), which makes the analysis.

As a result some UK doctors write off patients as too old for treatment for cancer and other conditions. Les Scaife, an 83 year-old still working, developed skin and breast cancer. But before receiving treatment he was continually quizzed about his age which doctors claimed was to be sure fit enough for surgery.  Nice try, but the patient’s age would have been well known to them without asking. The quizzing was an insidious attempt to intimidate him into backing away from treatment.

Scaife said “I did feel that there was something in the back ground there, that I felt that I wasn’t going to get the same treatment as someone younger than me.  And I wanted to make the point that that wasn’t going to happen here. I’m entitled to the treatment that the illness deserves.”

Unfortunately Scaife is an exception amongst the Brits. Most people in the UK simply won’t speak up. They have become conditioned to simply following what the government tells you to do; so when the NHS pronounces judgment (based on “cost-effectiveness analysis”), people in Britain resignedly just get in the end-of-life management line.

According to Macmillan Cancer Support, a charity providing information and financial help to those with cancer – patients are judged by age not symptoms. A Macmillan study showed that 81% of doctors would be willing to treat a 68-year-old cancer stricken woman with chemotherapy (so 1 in 5 wouldn’t);  but make that woman a 73 year-old and only 47% of doctors would act the same way. 

The study shows that 1 in 3 doctors see age 70 as a benchmark after which it is financially not worth treating patients, no doubt influenced by NICE. Additionaly it shows that an extra 14,000 Brits a year age 75+ would survive cancer if they received same treatment as Americans (pre- Obamacare).

Jagtar Dhanda of Macmillan said “Normal older people can withstand the consequences of treatment, live well with that treatment and as a result, what we are saying is we need to think about why they aren’t more survivable outcomes for over 65’s in the UK compared to Europe as a whole.”

Professor of cancer medicine and oncology Justin Stebbing responded “I think it’s happening less, is what I would say, maybe it does happen from time to time, it shouldn’t happen, but with research like this it will happen even less going forwards, we know that very fit people over the age of 65 can be cured of cancer or we can turn it into a chronic disease they can live with.”

Stebbing’s response is typically British! Confronted with the stark obvious he engages in a slow walk back of what has been the policy of many of his colleagues while passively explaining that the policy is in fact in retreat.

Ironically the Daily Mail, who led the UK’s charge against Palin in 2009 has run with a story this week about the travesty of pensioners (women over 60, men over 65) not securing the services they need from the NHS. They are right to point out that “Young lung cancer sufferers are only 10 per cent more likely to die within five years than their continental counterparts. But pensioners with the disease have 44 per cent less chance of survival.”

The Mail also quotes Caroline Abrahams, of the charity Age UK, who said “It’s good news that with the right care and treatment older people can survive for many years after cancer. It is often forgotten that people over 75 represent a third of all cancer diagnoses and a half of all cancer deaths. People over 80 with the disease are the only age group in which mortality rates have got worse in the last 40 years. An individual’s date of birth should not be used as a proxy for health and fitness or influence treatment decisions. Assessments of older people must be based on their needs and not simply on their age. Anything else is blatant age discrimination.”

Finally five years on people like Abrahams are being considered to have mainstream opinions to be acted on. Britain may finally becoming enlightened in this one area as they stop seeing people as simply not worth treating and a culture of life prevails.

Sarah Palin can feel vindicated though don’t expect to see apologies in the British press anytime soon. A prophet sounds a trumpet and makes the way for the coming of something new, but it is rarely without paying a great personal price.
 http://canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/60704?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

Offline truth_seeker

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What examples exist today, of "death panels" in the US?

My Mother in law, who is 86, must be one of the largest consumers of government paid Medicare medical resources, period.

She has diabetes, neuropathy, weakened heart, deafness, cancers, to list a few. Broke a foot a few months ago.

Not a single treatment, procedure, medication, test, specialist, ambulance, has been withheld.

Offline Olivia

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What examples exist today, of "death panels" in the US?

My Mother in law, who is 86, must be one of the largest consumers of government paid Medicare medical resources, period.

She has diabetes, neuropathy, weakened heart, deafness, cancers, to list a few. Broke a foot a few months ago.

Not a single treatment, procedure, medication, test, specialist, ambulance, has been withheld.
So far.... I've read several articles on Obamacare that said the less hospitals spent on seniors, the more money they would get.
« Last Edit: January 25, 2014, 04:34:57 PM by Olivia »
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Offline truth_seeker

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So far.... I've read several articles on Obamacare that said the less hospitals spent on seniors, the more money they would get.
It would be worthwhile if you could share those articles.

Offline Rapunzel

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It would be worthwhile if you could share those articles.

CMS (that is medicare/medicaid) passed a ruling last year which tracks patients going in and out of the hospital and they are dinging hospitals financially based on the number of patients being re-admitted within a certain period of time.  This does not mean patients are going to be turned away, this does mean hospitals are not going the be long term financially sustainable with a large elderly population in this country and elderly patients having frequent re-admissions (many times from skilled nursing facilities who send their elderly to the hospital at the first sign of anything because they don't want the legal liability.  There is also a movement afoot to pay doctors only on patient outcome - which is a big problem if you have the least idea of how many patients are totally non-compliant with medical care and refuse to stop drinking, smoking, refuse to exercise or diet.  Doctors should not be held personally responsible for the outcome of treatment on these patients but this is exactly what CMS is pushing - and pushing hard.
“The time is now near at hand which must probably determine, whether Americans are to be, Freemen, or Slaves.” G Washington July 2, 1776

Online EC

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Thank you, Rap.

Seems a tiny bit short sighted to me. Dad went in to have one of his eyes done. He was home for a day before he fell and broke his arm (silly old sod forgot he had no depth perception and tried to head downstairs in the dark). Two different things, and the hospital would be dinged for it?

I will say one thing about the NHS. My Mom developed breast cancer. She was booked in for a biopsy the same day her Doc found the lump, and a week later she had the operation. 6 chemo treatments, all organized smoothly and with no fuss and now - 5 years later - she is cancer free and enjoying life. A little too much sometimes. If I ride up on the bike she'll grab my helmet and take it for a spin. She's 80  :laugh:

But - they live outside a small city with a very respected hospital. Their doctor isn't just a GP, she is also a surgeon in the same hospital, as well as a long time family friend. Not everyone is that lucky.
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Offline Lipstick on a Hillary

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What examples exist today, of "death panels" in the US?

My Mother in law, who is 86, must be one of the largest consumers of government paid Medicare medical resources, period.

She has diabetes, neuropathy, weakened heart, deafness, cancers, to list a few. Broke a foot a few months ago.

Not a single treatment, procedure, medication, test, specialist, ambulance, has been withheld.

What are you, high?   Obamacare has been in effect in the US for what?  3-4 weeks?   

Why are you citing something that took place months ago?

Offline Rapunzel

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Actually we do have a good example.  Remember the little cystic fibrosis girl who needed a lung transplant and because of her age Kathleen Sibelius had to sign off on it and she said nope...  so far she has said no twice and both had to sue for the surgery.  The little girl was on verge of death and today is home and in good shape thanks to the court ruling in her favor, the little boy died waiting for a lung.
“The time is now near at hand which must probably determine, whether Americans are to be, Freemen, or Slaves.” G Washington July 2, 1776

Offline Oceander

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What examples exist today, of "death panels" in the US?

My Mother in law, who is 86, must be one of the largest consumers of government paid Medicare medical resources, period.

She has diabetes, neuropathy, weakened heart, deafness, cancers, to list a few. Broke a foot a few months ago.

Not a single treatment, procedure, medication, test, specialist, ambulance, has been withheld.

Since the full weight of Obastard care hasn't been imposed yet, it's not likely that the democrats' death panels have been fully deployed as of yet.

Your mother is also mere anecdote, not proof one way or the other, just as Les Scaife is - a squeaky wheel who gets the grease.

A further reason is that many places that provide care to the elderly are privately owned but have figured out how to scam the medicare system to arbitrage the inefficiencies created by government distortion of the marketplace for such services.  Providing a large quantity of services yields a large profit, even if the margin on each service is minimal; the profit gets even better when one realizes that many services - maybe not to your mother, but certainly to others - are provided in a minimally competent way by people who really aren't suitably trained for the task.

Offline Rapunzel

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Before Obamacare an elderly person who was unable to care for his or herself were sent to a nursing home for care, therapy, etc.  Medicare paid for 90 days at which point they were either released or went on medicaid to cover the cost of hospitalization.  If a person was nearing end of life they could stay in their home and hospice would come in to medicate, bathe, etc... at a huge cost SAVINGS vs being in a hospital..  Now under OCare as soon as an elderly patient in a nursing home is deemed "not progressing in their treatment" Medicare kicks them out... doesn't matter if they have someone to care for them, they either have long term care insurance or they are SOL...   oh and hospice - fugetaboutit... O-Care cut the hell out of hospice.
“The time is now near at hand which must probably determine, whether Americans are to be, Freemen, or Slaves.” G Washington July 2, 1776


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