Uber-Liberal and former Enron Advisor Paul Krugman is a big, big fan of government-run health care. He has told us that the scary stories coming out of England about its National Health System (NHS) were fiction.
“In Britain, the government itself runs the hospitals and employs the doctors. We’ve all heard scare stories about how that works in practice; these stories are false.”
Here’s one of those stories that Krugman tells us is false.
Sentenced to death for being old: The NHS denies life-saving treatment to the elderly, as one man's chilling story reveals
When Kenneth Warden was diagnosed with terminal bladder cancer, his hospital consultant sent him home to die, ruling that at 78 he was too old to treat.Even the palliative surgery or chemotherapy that could have eased his distressing symptoms were declared off-limits because of his age.
His daughter decided to try to get him some treatment to make his final days more comfortable. She went to a doctor outside the NHS. Not only was he made comfortable, he was cured.
Thanks to her tenacity, Kenneth got the drugs and surgery he needed — and as a result his cancer was actually cured. Four years on, he is a sprightly 82-year-old who works out at the gym, drives a sports car and competes in a rowing team.
By law, the NHS is not allowed to discriminate against the elderly. But laws don’t enforce themselves. And Warden is one of tens of thousands who are being sent home to die.
This kind of ‘professional opinion’ appears to be costing more than 14,000 lives each year, thanks to routine discrimination by doctors who assume older patients are too frail for surgery, chemotherapy or radiotherapy.This is according to experts at Macmillan Cancer Support, who warned last week that every day up to 40 elderly cancer sufferers are dying needlessly because they are being denied the best treatments. This is particularly true, it says, for patients over the age of 70.
The charity estimates that if the treatment of older patients matched that on offer in the U.S., as many as 14,000 lives could be saved every year.
Ciaran Devane, chief executive of Macmillan, points out that despite major advances in diagnosis and treatment, the survival chances for patients over the age of 75 have grown only by a fraction.
Mr Devane says: ‘Writing people off as too old for treatment is utterly shameful. We have a moral duty to treat people as individuals and give them the best chance of beating cancer, regardless of their age.’
Sarah Palin was absolutely right when she said that Obamacare contained “death panels.” I note that Paul Krugman, despite his reputed deal with the Devil, is getting older. If this law is upheld, I want to be on that panel that tells this despicable fraud that he’s too old for medical care, it’s too expensive to treat him and that he’s already used too much of the nation’s resources. Then give him one of Obama’s famous pain pills and send him home.
Hat tip Instapundit.
Obamacare would institute a rationing system in the U.S. similar to the National Health Service in Great Britain. Committees (commonly referred to as death panels) would decide what treatment options would be available for different types of patients. The idea is to save money by not “wasting” it on the treatment of people who are old anyway. This is what President Obama acknowledged when he said, in answer to a question from an audience, that under his system grandma will have to “just take a pill” rather than be provided expensive treatment: