ObamaCare Lies

From Your ObamaCare Watchdog

FDA De-Listing Of Avastin A Precursor To Life In The Age Of Obama

Avastin is one of the most effective cancer fighting drugs available. Made by U.S. pharmaceutical Genentech (yes, American made, by that out-of-date, heartless, free-market American health care system), it has had remarkable success in treating colon, rectum, lung and other cancers when used in tandem with (and even without) chemotherapy. Recently, it’s shown promise in treating late stage breast cancer as well, which has created great excitement among patients, families and the medical community. Some call it a blockbuster. But the Food and Drug Administration has revoked its use for breast cancer treatment because of its expense (see Merrill Matthews at Forbes.com). It is expensive, but when is it government’s role to determine how much something should cost? 

While I’m asking rhetorical questions, let me ask this one as well: What does this have to do with ObamaCare? It’s obvious. While president himself says ObamaCare will not affect end-of-life decisions nor rationing, the FDA has taken the first step. If the FDA bans the drug because of cost, insurance companies won’t cover it. (Some already have, even though the manufacturer has appealed the decision, and Medicare, a key player in ObamaCare, appears ready to follow suit.) If insurance won’t cover it, isn’t that rationing? Furthermore, Obamacare claims to cover pre-existing conditions. But if there is no drug to treat the condition, are they really covering pre-existing conditions? If a tree falls in the woods . . .

As Grace-Maire Turner, a scholar at the Galen Institute, writes in the Daily Globe this week, ObamaCare fears already are being realized. Proving the point with a touching real life example is, here an excerpt from a Peter Pitts column on Nicole Brochu’s Our Health blog at the BaltimoreSun.com. He reports on a Mississippi mom affected by the FDA’s decision (check out the YouTube link), a precursor of life in the Age of Obama if ObamaCare is not repealed by Congress or the courts.

First federal officials decided on Dec. 16 that they would revoke approval of Avastin, the blockbuster drug, to treat advanced breast cancer. Then, before the drug maker could even appeal the ruling, some insurance companies seized the chance to deny coverage.

So much for the promise that bureaucrats would never come between patients and their doctors.

Perhaps the most visible of these patients is Christi Turnage, a 48-year-old Mississippi nurse and mother of three. Her doctors agree that Avastin has kept her metastatic breast cancer in check for more than two years, without the ravaging effects of chemotherapy. Nearly 10,000 Americans have signed her online petition in support of Avastin, and her son, Josh, produced a moving YouTube video appeal.

“The stress level in my household has been multiplied times 1,000,” Turnage said. “My boys are running around saying, ‘What are we going to do, what are you going to do, what can we do?'”

If drug maker Genentech‘s appeal to the Food and Drug Administration fails, and the FDA “de-lists” Avastin for breast cancer, her insurance company likely would stop coverage. Then she would have to stop treatment, because the Turnage family — like most — can’t afford the $8,000-a-month price tag for Avastin.

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January 28, 2011 Posted by | Health Care Law | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

In case you missed: ObamaCare Lies: The Top 15 list!

As the momentous year that was 2010 draws to a close, we look back, in three parts, at the top 15 ObamaCare lies. The problem is, there are so many, it is nigh impossible to narrow them down. So, we used this criteria, which barely made it easier: It must be a lie refuted by the government itself, since it is in the government that the Obama-Reid-Pelosi Regime want us to place our trust for our health care.

Today (December 28): 15-11

Number 15: ObamaCare will preserve Medicare benefits and will increase options.

Fact: The president made the claim himself – he’s made all the promises in this edition, although maybe he doesn’t use the word “ObamaCare” (or maybe he does) — at an AARP panel in 2009. But according to his favorite source, the Congressional BudgetTrust The Lies, Not The "Truth"Office (see CBSNews.com), there will be $130 billion in cuts to companies that offer Medicare Advantage — and 25 percent of Medicare recipients use Medicare Advantage (see Reason.com). Furthermore, a few months after the bill was signed into law, the Department of Health and Human Services said ObamaCare would extend the life of Medicare 12 years. One problem: It based that on a Congressional Budget Office study. Next problem. There is no such study. In fact, CBO said the opposite: “. . . to describe the full amount of HI trust fund savings as both improving the government’s ability to pay future Medicare benefits and financing new spending outside of Medicare would essentially double-count a large share of those savings.”Reason.com has more.

For senior citizens who think they will have more options under the law, insurers are cutting their Medicare Advantage offerings. Still others are exiting from the Medicare market entirely. Rick Foster, Medicare’s chief actuary wrote that Medicare under ObamaCare, will offer “less generous benefit packages” and “a large increase in the out-of-pocket costs incurred by MA enrollees.” — Source: Wall Street Journal, Oct. 16, 2010.

Number 14: ObamaCare is good for the healthcare industry, will create jobs and provide coverage for more Americans than every before.

Fact: The Great Pumpkin has a better chance of appearing than that happening. The Association of American Medical Colleges, a source for government at all levels, reports that a previously projected shortfall of physicians of 39,600 by 2015, now will rise to a shortfall of 63,000 and grow worse by 2025. Although ObamaCare advocates say this is not true, by its own projections, it will cover 32 million newly insured people with another 36 million entering Medicare. To pay for these people, the government-run insurance programs will cut payments to doctors, driving more out of the profession. (Source: Reuters.)

Number 13: Much of the cost to fund ObamaCare comes from money already appropriated. It doesn’t add any new spending.

Fact: The president has said that the $100 billion per year cost of ObamaCare would come out of the $2 trillion per year we spend on health care costs. There’s that pesky Congressional Budget Office, again. The president’s favorite source reported that “the two pieces of legislation [that make up the health care law] were estimated to increase mandatory outlays by $401 billion and raise revenues by $525 billion.” See Reason.com.

Number 12: ObamaCare makes the healthcare system more efficient.

Fact: One doesn’t need to look far for an example to disprove that claim. Even one of the jewels in the law proponents love to talk about, the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports (CLASS) Act, complicates the system and runs up debt. CLASS a voluntary long-term care insurance program. Enrollees must pay premiums for five years before claiming benefits. According to the Congressional Budget Office, this will create a $70 billion surplus over 10 years, helping reduce the deficit. But Medicare’s own chief actuary says the money will be needed immediately to pay claims, wiping out any deficit reduction. In fact, the actuary says, claims will exceed the surplus necessitating “dramatic cuts to benefits” or more taxpayer money to cover the costs. The CLASS Act also disproves the claim that Obamacare is not designed to compete with private sector insurance. — Source:“Obamacare: The Impact On Future Generations,” by James C. Capretta, The Heritage Foundation, June 1, 2010

Number 11ObamaCare will not lead to the taxation of an employer’s health care benefits.

Fact: Remember during the 2008 campaign when candidate Obama criticized John McCain’s plan as one that would tax health care benefits? As it turned out, he must have liked the idea. In his final memo before leaving the administration, former Obama administration Budget Director Peter Orszag wrote, “These changes include a new excise tax on the highest-cost insurance plans. . . .” In fact, the law includes, starting in 2018, a 40 percent tax on so-called Cadillac policies, costing more than $10,200 for individuals and $27,500 for families. — Source: Wall Street Journal, Oct. 16, 2010.

Today (December 29): 10-6

Number 10: ObamaCare increases transparency.

Fact: When the Department of Health and Human Services issued the 111 waivers from ObamaCare to corporations and unions, no press release was issued, the announcement came on a Friday, and it was buried on HHS’s Web site – it takes six clicks to find it. (See video from Fox News Channel’s Cashin’ In.) But it doesn’t stop at the walls of HHS. Early this fall, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius warned insurance companies not to communicate to customers the relationship between premium increases and Obamacare’s massive regulations and mandates. She wrote in a letter to America’s Health Insurance Plans, the health insurance industry’s trade group, that “[T]here will be zero tolerance for this type of misinformation and unjustified rate increases.” Instead . . . “Later this fall, we will issue a regulation that will require state or federal review of all potentially unreasonable rate increases filed by health insurers, with the justification for increases posted publicly for consumers and employers.” In other words, no debate, no discussion. We will tell the insurance companies what to say (see Americans For Limited Government, GetLiberty.org, October 22, 2010).

Number 9: ObamaCare will bend the “cost curve down.”

Fact: Don’t you hate liberal, sound-too-cool-and-knowledgable-jargon? Anyway, the government’s own Medicare actuary disagrees! The “cost curve” straightens up and flies high under Obamacare. In the first 10 years alone, medical costs will increase $310 billion and health care will represent a larger portion of GDP than current projections. — Source: HotAir.com, Aug. 5, 2010

Number 8: ObamaCare will provide coverage to all people who do not have it.

Fact: According to the Congressional Budget Office, 10 years from now at least 21 million Americans will remain uninsured. Not only that, but almost one-half of the newly covered won’t get access to true health insurance; instead, they will be added to the Medicaid program, adding to its already overburdened problems of access and quality. — Source: New York Post, July 20, 2010.

Number 7ObamaCare does not allow for taxpayer funding of abortion, violating decades of bipartisan affirmation of the Hyde Amendment.

Fact: Why take our word for it? Here is a quote from the Maryland Health Insurance Plan: “The MHIP Federal Plan offers the same benefit package as other MHIP plan options,” and all five MHIP plans cover abortion. The loophole banning taxpayer funding of abortion is so large, the pretend restrictions were unnecessary. (Source: CNSNews.com)

Number 6: Obamacare will lower health insurance premiums.

Fact: Not even Senate Democrats believe that one! Only four weeks after ObamaCare became law, they brought forth legislation to limit what insurance companies could charge. The New York Times, of all papers, has it documented here. But let’s hear it straight from the horses’ mouths: Here’s a video of Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) saying premiums are going up under ObamaCare followed by the POTUS promising the opposite. If the president and his liberal Senate buddies can’t believe each other, why should any American believe them?

Today (December 30): 5-1

Number 5: Under ObamaCare, you can keep the coverage you have if you prefer it to other options in the law.

Fact: An internal memo leaked from the Department of Health and Human Services says that more than two-thirds of businesses could be forced to change their current coverage; possibly 80 percent for small businesses. Other reports document that seniors with Medicare Advantage and people with health savings accounts also are likely to be forced out of their plans. Even Americans whose plans are “grandfathered” under the law may still be forced to change coverage to a plan that meets government requirements if they make any material changes to their coverage. – Source: New York Post, July 20, 2010.

The federal government’s own draft guidelines indicate that between one-half and two-thirds of all Americans’ current private plans will lose their protected, or grandfathered, status by 2013. “‘[F]or plans that do not fall under the grandfathered status, employers would have to find a plan that complies with the health care bill.’ More than one million part-time and lower-wage workers are already feeling the squeeze, as popular ‘mini-med’ affordable limited-benefit plans will be banned by the feds starting this fall.” – Source: HotAir.com, Aug. 5, 2010.

Number 4: ObamaCare is not government control on the health insurance industry.

Fact: The health care bill has thousands of powers granted to the secretary of Health and Human Services, currently Kathleen Sebelius. The powers literally give her autocratic power to impose government directives, regulations and sanctions on private businesses. The waivers exempting 111 organizations a pass (for the time being) on implementing some of the new regulations, while an admission to what is all wrong with the law, also shows hwo much power the law vests in the secretary. It’s a receipe for unelected government bureaucrats and political appointees to play favorites with or bully certain  members of the private sector who do or don’t shut and up and do as told. This power, alone, leads to cronyism and political paybacks and “gangster government.” The best way to provide flexibility in health care is to free up the market from government regulation, not more government. With increased competition, consumers will have more choices to fit their needs – not government’s needs. (See Michael Barone in the Washington Examiner.)

Number 3: ObamaCare will not lead to rationing.

Fact: It may be here sooner than we think. For example, the Food and Drug Administration now is considering cost as a factor in its approval process. The late-stage cancer drug Avastin is a test case. If cost becomes a point for consideration in drug approval, only those who can afford to pay for Avastin, or any drug, will have access to it, because Medicare and private insurance companies will be able, in the case of Avastin, to deny breast cancer patients coverage for this life-extending drug (see The Daily Caller, Sept. 16, 2010). In addition, the Association of American Medical Colleges, which provides information state and federal governments cite, projected a shortage of 33,100 physicians in specialties such as cardiology, oncology and emergency medicine in 2015. In addition, the respected Rand Corporation and Institute of Medicine also project doctor shortages. (SourceReuters.)

Number 2“Death Panels” in ObamaCare are the imagination of right-wing extremists.

Fact: The nation’s leading liberal economist, Paul Krugman, a New York Times columnist, Ivy League professor and a Nobel Prize winner, who advises liberal policy makers and legislaors, repeatedly has said that there are death panels! He said so last fall and in the spring he said, “death panels” “will make binding judgments and  . . . will save (the government) quite a lot of money.” See the video here! In fact, he wants the government debt commission to “embrace” death panels! On ABC News’ This Week, he said, “Medicare is going to have to decide what it’s going to pay for . . . it’s going to have to decide which medical procedures are not effective at all and should not be paid for at all. In other words . . . the panel that was part of the health care reform. … Some years down the pike we’re going to get the real solution . . . a combination of death panels and sales taxes. …”

Number 1: ObamaCare is constitutional!

Fact: WRONG! Federal Judge Henry Hudson wrote, in a well researched and reasoned 43-page opinion, in declaring ObamaCare unconstitutional in Commonwealth of Virginia vs. Sebelius, in the only case between a state with a law prohibiting the individual mandate and the federal government:

Neither the Supreme Court nor any federal court of appeals has extended Commerce Clause powers to compel an individual to involuntarily enter a stream of commerce by purchasing a commodity in the private market. In doing so, enactment of the Minimum Essential Coverage Provision exceeds the Commerce Clause powers vested in Congress under Article I. …

The absence of a constitutionally viable exercise of this enumerated power is fatal to the accompanying sanction for noncompliance. …

A thorough survey of pertinent constitutional case law has yielded no reported decisions from any federal appellate courts extending the Commerce Clause or General Welfare Clause to encompass regulation of a person’s decision not to purchase a product, notwithstanding its effect on interstate commerce or role in a global regulatory scheme. The unchecked expansion of congressional power to the limits suggested by the Minimal Essential Coverage Provision would invite unbridled exercise of federal police powers. At its core, this dispute is not simply about regulating the business of insurance — or crafting a scheme of universal health insurance coverage — it’s about an individual’s right to choose to participate.

Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution confers upon Congress only discrete enumerated governmental powers. The powers not delegated to the United States by Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the states, respectively, or to the people.

On careful review, this Court must conclude that section 1501 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act — specifically the Minimum Essential Coverage Provision — exceeds the constitutional boundaries of congressional power.


 

January 1, 2011 Posted by | Health Care Law | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

   

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