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Palin Leaves Behind Mismanaged AK Health Care System - Hundreds Die Waiting For Care
By Logan Murphy
Wednesday Aug 12, 2009 3:00pm
Perhaps Sarah Palin made that ridiculous statement about "Obama Death Panels" because she knew this story was going to break -- it was happening in her own state, right under her nose:
State programs intended to help disabled and elderly Alaskans with daily life -- taking a bath, eating dinner, getting to the bathroom -- are so poorly managed, the state cannot assure the health and well-being of the people they are supposed to serve, a new federal review found.
The situation is so bad the federal government has forbidden the state to sign up new people until the state makes necessary improvements. No other state in the nation is under such a moratorium, according to a spokeswoman for the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.
Troubled Alaska health programs face federal restriction
IN-HOME CARE: Lawsuits, huge case backlog prompt moratorium on applications.
By LISA DEMER
A particularly alarming finding concerns deaths of adults in the programs. In one 2 1/2 year stretch, 227 adults already getting services died while waiting for a nurse to reassess their needs. Another 27 died waiting for their initial assessment, to see if they qualified for help.
Another sign of trouble for the feds: eight lawsuits against the state division.
Most were brought by the Northern Justice Project, a private civil rights firm created in 2006 to pursue class action suits and other big cases.
"I think the lawsuits reflect that these two programs are and have been run incompetently for some time," said Jim Davis, one of the partners and founders of the justice project.
The common thread in the suits is that seniors and disabled Alaskans aren't getting the services they are entitled to, under the law, Davis said. In one big win, the state Supreme Court ruled last year that the state had improperly cut off or reduced services to more than 1,000 needy people.
Originally posted by SevenThunders
I read that section of the bill. It is a death panel as far as I can see. Although they 'suggest' topics such as wills and so forth the actually content of the mandatory visits will be determined by a committee of bureaucrats.
They even suggest restricting information on how the patient can receive life saving treatment. Along with other provisions in this bill the intent is clear. Make death the preferred choice for your treatment.
The reason for this is twofold. The authors of the bill are advocates of eugenics and thus wish to cull 'undesirables', and the other reason is that they know they don't have the resources to extend full services to the so called 'uninsured' (aka illegal aliens and welfare families.)
The bill is full of ways to ration health care. They know that they will need to do so in order to hold down costs while pretending to take care of everyone.
Originally posted by buddhasystem
I grant you it's murky waters at best, in the sense of morality and all, but we just can't ignore economics of that. Eventually one way or another, a choice will be made, even with the current bankrupting system, between a kidney transplant for person ABC who's 80 and has terminal cancer, and a similar transplant for person XYZ who's 30 and has better chances.
Originally posted by Sestias
I don't doubt that the age and potential ability to benefit from the transplant are factors that are considered, although I'm not familiar with exactly how that decision-making process works.
But I do know these decisions are already being made on a daily basis.
If there is health care reform these are vexing questions that will have to be addressed sooner or later. There will be somebody whose interests will not be served and there will be heart-breaking consequences no matter how the decision is ultimately made.
I just know that this is already happening, under the present free-market system. Failing to reform health care (or more accurately health insurance) won't solve the problem.