Dr Death Speaks Out on Death Panels

The creator of the portion of legislation which later came to be called “the death panel” was Representative Earl Blumenauer, the Democratic congressman from Oregon. He sarcastically mentioned in the NY Times op-ed piece that he “didn’t mean to kill grandma” but that he felt that it was a good idea if people had end of life discussions with their doctors.

“I found it perverse that Medicare would pay for almost any medical procedure, yet not reimburse doctors for having a thoughtful conversation to prepare patients and families for the delicate, complex and emotionally demanding decisions surrounding the end of life.”NY Times

But why should taxpayers have to pay for that “thoughtful conversation?” And as much as such conversations should happen, it should also include family members as well as legal counsel. Blumenaur goes on to state that even Governor Sarah Palin of Alaska had suggested a similar panel for Alaska.. Well, not quite. What Governor Palin did was have a directive for Healthcare Decisions Day which suggested having end of life discussions and NO WHERE did she state that the State of Alaska pay for it or any government agency.

The issue is not the discussion but the “reimbursement to physicians” for it. This is a LEGAL issue, not a medical issue per se. Is the government planning on handling our legal affairs now as well?


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