Tag Archives: death panels

Baby death panels

Guest post by Jacqueline Halbig, principal at Sovereign Global Solutions and former senior policy adviser for the Dept. of Health and Human Services

Services_CSI_NICUIf Obamacare is supposed to increase health care access and affordability, why does it seem to punish those most in need? Consider minority babies, both unborn and born.

Perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised that an administration which redefines abortion as health care continues to expand funding to Planned Parenthood, which operates the nation’s largest abortion chain.

Planned Parenthood is underwritten by taxpayer dollars to the tune of $480 million ($365 million from federal funds and the rest from state and local funds). Now, under Obamacare, Medicaid expansion will further fill its coffers.

This type of funding is even more disturbing given that Planned Parenthood appears to be targeting minority populations with its abortion “services.” A 2011 study called “Racial Targeting and Population Control” by Life Dynamics Incorporated revealed that Planned Parenthood clinics are 2-1/2 times more likely to be in neighborhoods with a disproportionately high Black and Hispanic population.

But it is equally troubling that if they survive life in the womb, these babies, especially those born prematurely, now face an even greater uphill battle – receiving needed health care.

Every year between November and March, there are outbreaks of Respiratory Syncytial Virus, an illness similar to the flu.

RSV1RSV is the leading cause of pneumonia and bronchiolitis, and hospitalization for children under the age of one; premature infants and children before the age of two with congenital heart or chronic lung disease are considered to be at highest risk.

Each year RSV causes two million hospitalizations and 14,000 deaths. In addition, RSV disproportionately affects minority and especially African American babies, who, according to the Centers for Disease Control, are 59% percent more likely to be born prematurely than white infants.

While there is no vaccine for RSV, there is an FDA-approved treatment available. When it became available in 1997, the American Academy of Pediatrics issued evidence-based guidelines for its use, recommending that the treatment be administered once per month during outbreak season (an average of five months total).

But in 2009, with no clear medical evidence for doing so, the AAP both shrunk the pool of eligible infants and reduced the number of RSV treatments that would be made available – for some babies down to 3 doses, while for others as low as 1 dose. The only clear reason given was cost.

Unfortunately, the AAP’s guidelines are widely implemented by Medicaid and insurance providers, who in turn followed suit and greatly reduced coverage.

In response, concerned groups of parents, prenatal advocates, and medical providers such as the National Perinatal Association, the National Medical Association, and the National Black Nurses Association have pointed out that there is no definitive research to support these changes (indeed, these are not FDA-approved doses) and are urging the AAP to reconsider their recommendations.

If cost is the issue, let’s consider the cost of non-treatment. A 2010 study by the NMA and NBNA showed the rate of hospitalization and emergency room visits without proper treatment for RSV is astronomical.

For example, a child not properly treated for RSV is five times more likely to be hospitalized and more than twice as likely to visit an emergency room visit than with the flu.

But for those premature infants who received treatment, hospitalization decreased by 55-80%. Furthermore, infants who received the recommended treatment had decreased emergency room and physician office visits. As a result, there are cost savings associated with proper treatment.

Since RSV disproportionately affects African American, Hispanic and premature babies, there is great concern that this rationing policy will further increase health disparities in these communities.

So what’s the real benefit of limiting this treatment? If Obamacare’s objective is to make health care more accessible and affordable, an honest cost benefit analysis would respect the bottom line and acknowledge that an ounce of RSV prevention is cheaper than a pound of emergency room cure – unless their bottom line equates death as the cheapest option.

To support the children and families affected by this rationing decision, please sign this petition at Change.org.

Pro-life blog buzz 7-27-12

Thumbnail image for blog buzz.jpgby Susie Allen, host of the blog, Pro-Life in TN, and Kelli

We welcome your suggestions for additions to our Top Blogs (see tab on right side of home page)! Email Susie@jillstanek.com.

  • Women’s Rights without Frontiers has another story of the family planning “terrorism” in China:

    The couple’s second daughter fell to her death from a fourth floor window during a quarrel with her boyfriend. Her parents took the boyfriend’s parents to court and won a judgment of 43,000 RMB ($6700), but they were never paid. The victim’s husband petitioned to enforce the judgment.

    In retaliation for this petition, that local government forcibly sterilized his wife. The local government told the victim’s husband that if he and his wife kept quiet about the forced sterilization, they would receive compensation. The couple, however, decided to post the incident on the Internet.

  • At Moral Outcry, Susan Tyrrell writes about a Minnesota bar that has installed a pregnancy test vending machine in its women’s restroom:

    The idea this bar is perpetuating is another sign that society knows that life begins at conception. The vending machines aren’t for women who are 5 or 6 months pregnant, but for those who don’t know yet and want to be sure before they drink. It’s a wonderful idea if people do choose to drink, but the underlying message is better. It says, “if you have another life in you, even if that life is so teeny you didn’t know it was there yet, don’t hurt it.”…

What happens when $3 pregnancy tests come to a bar? Maybe then a woman has time to process without coercion, or reads the information about fetal alcohol syndrome which humanizes the baby she is carrying, even if he or she is three weeks old at that point. Maybe it gives her time to think and consider real options. And certainly the pub’s original goal is valid and viable. A baby may be spared pain and a hard life from suffering from fetal alcohol syndrome because a mom makes a choice to protect her child.

  • Pro-Life Action League advertises AbortionWiki’s 10-week internship opportunity for pro-lifers of all ages and locations.
  • The Road to Roe continues to examine the influence of the late Justice William Brennan in the cases of Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton and gives fascinating insight into the behind-the-scenes lobbying on the laws.

  • Wesley J. Smith notes how the New England Journal of Medicine has now suggested physicians be taken out of the assisted suicide equation (due to their reluctance to participate) and replaced with “the development of a central state or federal mechanism to confirm the authenticity and eligibility of patients’ requests, dispense medication, and monitor demand and use. Such a mechanism would obviate physician involvement beyond usual care.” Smith writes:

    Do we really think that a government that is constantly looking for ways to contain health care costs will be likely to deny death eligibility? Do we think that government death-control officials will do the right thing — or the cheap thing?

Take this proposal, coupled with government-run health care, and you have “death panels on steroids.”

  • We previously reported that the pro-life group from New Zealand’s Auckland University were under attack for distributing pro-life pamphlets on campus. ProLife NZ has this update:

    Pro-Life Aucklandwas facing exile after complaints were laid alleging it was harassing students and spreading misinformation about abortion. If the vote had passed, the club would have lost access to AUSA-supplied benefits like room booking and funding.After an hour of speakers and debate, the motion failed: 125 for and 227 against, with 12 abstentions.

  • A University of Michigan Students for Life member recounts a time when he had to answer the question, “Why are you pro life?” His answer:

    I am pro-life because I believe in the intrinsic value and dignity of the human person–that is to say, a value and dignity that he possesses not because of his perceived worth, condition, convenience, or any other factor aside from the very nature of his membership in our human race.Have you thought of how you would answer this question?

[Photos via HuffPo and Catholic Lane]

(Prolifer)ations 4-5-11

Thumbnail image for blog buzz.jpgby Susie Allen, host of the blog, Pro-Life in TN

As always, we welcome your suggestions for additions to our Top Blogs (see tab on right side of home page)! Email Susie@jillstanek.com.

  • ProWomanProLife highlights a story from the April 3rd Academy of Country Music awards show featuring “Music from the Heart.” See the song below as performed by Darius Rucker and a choir of young people with developmental disorders:

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Jivin J’s Life Links 9-9-09

web grab.jpgby JivinJ

  • Sarah Palin discusses the problem with the bureaucratization of health care in the Wall Street Journal:
  • Now look at one way Mr. Obama wants to eliminate inefficiency and waste: He’s asked Congress to create an Independent Medicare Advisory Council – an unelected, largely unaccountable group of experts charged with containing Medicare costs. In an interview with the in April, the president suggested that such a group, working outside of “normal political channels,” should guide decisions regarding that “huge driver of cost… the chronically ill and those toward the end of their lives….”

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