Saturday, January 8, 2011

Arizona Institutes Death Panels

Contributed by Katie Foley, 1.2011

A friend of mine alerted me to this story - you can find the news story here:
Or Google it!

Yes, you read the title to this post correctly.  Arizona's latest version of Medicaid has removed 98 people from transplant lists in an effort to save "one-tenth of one per cent of its $825 million budget deficit" (note: Minnesota's is $6.2 BILLION) .  The reason for the change was that the the surgeries were both too costly and too unlikely to be successful.  That's right - the overwhelmingly Republican legislature (at least two to one) did a cost/benefit analysis and 98 Arizonans lost.

The woman mentioned in the story itself was waiting on a double lung transplant, having been born with cystic fibrosis.  The following is utter speculation on my part, but I would bet that she is on Medicaid because she would be unable to obtain affordable individual coverage due to her (undoubtedly) expensive pre-existing condition.  So, the 27 year old was forced to rely on the flimsy coverage provided by her "red state" while using whatever money she could earn with the 25% of her lung tissue remaining to purchase expensive but life-saving drugs.

Health insurance has become literally the difference between life and death in this country.  I'm not sure that a "state-run" system would work, I honestly don't know enough about the economics of the issue to take a really strong stance for or against any proposition.  But maybe the republican claims that democrats were going to kill my grandparents was to hide the fact that they were killing a 27 year old woman in Arizona.  Or maybe it's never been about my grandparents or any woman in any state, maybe it was "all about the Benjamins".  Of course, now that such a big stink has been made some "top Republicans" are claiming to have received "bad information."

You can call it whatever you want, but I call it unbe-frickin-lievable.  As for the 27 year old CF patient - I call that another example of the right's pro-life-until-birth agenda.

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