When my mother was diagnosed with carcinoid cancer in 2005, when she was 49, it came as a lightning shock. Her mother, at 76, had yet to go gray, and her mother's mother, at 95, was still playing bingo in her nursing home. My mother had always been, despite her diminutive frame, a titanic and irrepressible force of vitality and love. She had given birth to me and my nine younger siblings, and juggled kids, home and my father's medical practice with humor and grace for three decades. She swam three times a week in the early mornings, ate healthily and never smoked....
Carcinoid, a form of neuroendocrine cancer, is a terminal disease but generally responds well to treatment by Sandostatin, a drug that slows tumor growth and reduces (but does not eliminate) the symptoms of fatigue, nausea and gastrointestinal dysfunction. My mother received a painful shot twice a month and often couldn't sit comfortably for days afterward.
As with most cancers, one thing led to another. There have been several more surgeries, metastases, bone deterioration, a terrible bout of thyroiditis (an inflammation of the thyroid gland), and much more. But my mother has kept fighting, determined to make the most of life, no matter what it brings. She has an indomitable will and is by far the toughest person I've ever met. But she wouldn't still be here without that semimonthly Sandostatin shot that slows the onslaught of her disease.
And then in November, along with millions of other Americans, she lost her health insurance. She'd had a Blue Cross/Blue Shield plan for nearly 20 years. It was expensive, but given that it covered her very expensive treatment, it was a terrific plan. It gave her access to any specialist or surgeon, and to the Sandostatin and other medications that were keeping her alive.
And then, because our lawmakers and president thought they could do better, she had nothing. Her old plan, now considered illegal under the new health law, had been canceled.
Because the exchange website in her state (Virginia) was not working, she went directly to insurers' websites and telephoned them, one by one, over dozens of hours. As a medical-office manager, she had decades of experience navigating the enormous problems of even our pre-ObamaCare system. But nothing could have prepared her for the bureaucratic morass she now had to traverse.
The repeated and prolonged phone waits were Sisyphean, the competence and customer service abysmal. When finally she found a plan that looked like it would cover her Sandostatin and other cancer treatments, she called the insurer, Humana, HUM +5.62% to confirm that it would do so. The enrollment agent said that after she met her deductible, all treatments and medications—including those for her cancer—would be covered at 100%. Because, however, the enrollment agents did not—unbelievable though this may seem—have access to the "coverage formularies" for the plans they were selling, they said the only way to find out in detail what was in the plan was to buy the plan. (Does that remind you of anyone?)
With no other options, she bought the plan and was approved on Nov. 22. Because by January the plan was still not showing up on her online Humana account, however, she repeatedly called to confirm that it was active. The agents told her not to worry, she was definitely covered.
Then on Feb. 12, just before going into (yet another) surgery, she was informed by Humana that it would not, in fact, cover her Sandostatin, or other cancer-related medications. The cost of the Sandostatin alone, since Jan. 1, was $14,000, and the company was refusing to pay.
The news was dumbfounding. This is a woman who had an affordable health plan that covered her condition. Our lawmakers weren't happy with that because . . . they wanted plans that were affordable and covered her condition. So they gave her a new one. It doesn't cover her condition and it's completely unaffordable....
The "Affordable" Care Act is a brutal, Procrustean disaster. In principle, it violates the irreducible particularity of human life, and in practice it will cause many individuals to suffer and die. We can do better, and we must.
Once I finished reading this article, I was outraged ... for two reasons.
First, ObamaCare is barely off the ground and already we are learning that the infamous Death Panels are a reality.
The second reason is that the woman with cancer is a resident of Virginia Beach, but this is the first I've heard about it. America’s news media are as much to blame for this fiasco as the Democrats in office. Why do I have to read about this in the Wall Street Journal, published in New York? I reside in the Virginia Beach area and the leading area newspaper, the Virginian Pilot, has long been a vigorous advocate of ObamaCare. Not a word about this woman’s situation has appeared in the local press. In fact, the Virginian Pilot has not bothered to do any stories about the way ObamaCare has affected local residents even though thousands of stories like this have appeared nationally and on the Internet. It just doesn’t fit their narrative.
As Glenn Reynolds says, the MSM are Democrat Operatives with Bylines.
: The American media, by acting as unpaid propagandists for the Obama regime has its counterpart in Ukraine as John Fund explains
. There, the Inter
network is the main TV organ. When protests broke out in Kiev and elsewhere in Ukraine, Inter
gave the people government propaganda. And finally things took a turn on a live broadcast that could not be edited when a brave reporter told the truth.
Reporter Halya Coynash points to the Yanukovych regime’s record of media control and censorship: “It proved unnervingly easy within a matter of months of Yanukovych’s  election to remove most critical analysis, negative reports about those in power, and inconvenient information from television.” Whatever new government is formed, that sorry record must not be repeated in a new Ukraine.
It proved unnervingly easy to create a news media in America that is the willing handmaid of the regime. The American media fell in love with the Obama image and has stayed smitten despite economic failure, foreign policy disasters, horrible war losses, and the weaponization of government agencies like the DOJ, IRS, CIA, DHS, and the FBI to destroy or stifle the political opposition. And now they cover up the disaster that is the hallmark of the Liberal dream: ObamaCare.
Must the always be blood in the streets before the truth comes out?