Death panels: One woman’s experience

August 12, 2009

Just found this…it is chilling and worth reading in its entirety here.

A truncated excerpt:


Don’t talk to me about death panels, Sarah Palin….

I’ve been part of a death panel conversation. I know about death panels…

You have no idea what it’s like to be called into a sterile conference room with a hospital administrator you’ve never met before and be told that your mother’s insurance policy will only pay for 30 days in ICU. You can’t imagine what it’s like to be advised that you need to “make some decisions,” like whether your mother should be released “HTD” which is hospital parlance for “home to die,” or if you want to pay out of pocket to keep her in the ICU another week. And when you ask how much that would cost you are given a number so impossibly large that you realize there really are no decisions to make. The decision has been made for you. “Living will” or no, it doesn’t matter. The bank account and the insurance policy have trumped any legal document.

If this isn’t a “death panel” I don’t know what is.


As for me and my family, we already have a bureaucratic entity between us and our doctor–my insurance company. Not to mention the fact that we pay richly for the privilege of having them NOT pay for almost anything, in spite of the fact that our premiums go up precipitously each year. Small business owners like us are unable to reasonably obtain group policies for our employees, even though we WANT to and investigate our options each year–and this leaves our staff AND us with no coverage unless we buy it in the form of an astronomically expensive individual plan. Or a less-expensive-but-super-crappy-unless-you-are-struck-by-an-18-wheeler-and-end-up-hospitalized-for-months plan-though-if-you-are-just-sick-with-strep-throat-you-are-out-of-luck. What we’re seeing now is a perfect example of “I’ve got mine, so screw everyone else.” No critical thought…no reading or learning about the actual proposal…Just unfounded terror, anger, and vitriol.

Very Christian-like…Real “soldier-of-the-Lord” kind of stuff, wouldn’t you agree?


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