Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Obama denying Americans the same preventive health care he receives

President Obama - Campaign event - Denver, Colorado - August 8, 2012:
"Now, let me tell you something, Denver..., I don’t think politicians should control the care that you get. I think there's one person to make these decisions on health care, and that is you. You should make that decision...

"Mr. Romney... says he’s the candidate of freedom. But freedom is the chance, the opportunity to determine for yourself the care that you need, when you need it...

"You know, my own mom would have been 70 years old this year. And my sister and I lost her... when she was just 52 years old... And I often think about what might have happened if a doctor had caught her [disease] sooner...

"Nobody should be able to tell their daughters or sons that the decisions they can and cannot make for themselves are constrained because of some politicians in Washington..."
From the American Spectator:
President Obama... has been availing himself of medical tests his HHS apparatchiks won't approve for payment if Medicare patients receive them.

In his routine physicals, for example, he has taken advantage of a state-of the art test... commonly known as a virtual colonoscopy (CTC)] [in which] the patient [is not exposed to] the potential risks associated with traditional colonoscopy... A good call by Obama and his doctors. Unfortunately for Medicare patients, his HHS apparatchiks have decreed that Medicare patients will not enjoy the same quality of care.

In 2009, the government's health care bureaucrats decided, "The evidence is inadequate to conclude that CT colonography is an appropriate screening test." Somehow, though, the evidence was convincing enough for the President's doctors to recommend it. And the chief medical officer of the ACS said at the time, "Virtual colonoscopy, or CT colonography, ought to be available as one of several options..." So, if it's good enough for the leader of the free world, why isn't it good enough for Medicare patients?....

Take a moment to consider that. The President of the United States, a public servant paid by the taxpayers, followed the advice of his taxpayer-paid doctors that he should have a taxpayer-paid CTC. Yet his health care commissars, also paid by taxpayers, have decreed that that it is too expensive to provide this very test to actual taxpayers when they retire and sign up for the Medicare program for which they have been paying all their working lives. This perverse system, it should be remembered, is not merely presided over but taken advantage of by a man who incessantly lectures these very taxpayers about "fairness."

[Similarly], Paul Hsieh, a practicing radiologist and proponent of free-market health care, recently reported more of the same in a Forbes column titled, "Is the President's Prostate Gland More Important Than Yours?" Writing that Obama chose to have a PSA test when he turned 50, Hsieh points out that others may not have that option once Obamacare is implemented: "ObamaCare empowers the government U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) to determine which preventive health services are medically appropriate."

Does the USPSTF sound familiar? It should. It's the bevy of Beltway bureaucrats who recommended restricting screening mammograms to women over age 50. The uproar caused by that proposal caused such a headache for the people trying to pass Obamacare that HHS Commissar Sebelius was eventually forced to partially walk it back. But this bureaucracy is still animated by an affinity for rationing. And, as Hsieh writes, this affinity isn't limited to preventive care for women: This year, the Task Force aroused controversy by giving a 'D' grade to routine PSA tests [and recommending against taking the tests.]
Which means that PSA tests will almost certainly not be covered by Obamacare.

"I don’t think politicians should control the care that you get. I think there's one person to make these decisions on health care, and that is you. You should make that decision...

"Freedom is the chance, the opportunity to determine for yourself the care that you need, when you need it..."

President Obama - August 8, 2012

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