The hideous face of state-run medicine in the UK

At the risk of going full Godwin, this is an updated version of Pfannmüller’s “natural method” during the Third Reich:
Behold the truly hideous endgame of state-run medicine.

International Liberty

I’m not easily grossed out or nauseated. Heck, I’m on email lists for a half-dozen softball teams and you can only imagine the strange/filthy/nasty things that guys send to each other.

But I read a story about the death panels in the United Kingdom that left me discombobulated. I can’t even begin to describe how I feel.

Here’s the intro of a disturbing report in the Daily Mail.

Sick children are being discharged from NHS hospitals to die at home or in hospices on controversial ‘death pathways’. Until now, end of life regime the Liverpool Care Pathway was thought to have involved only elderly and terminally-ill adults. But the Mail can reveal the practice of withdrawing food and fluid by tube is being used on young patients as well as severely disabled newborn babies.

And here are some of the horrifying details. Read at your own risk.

One doctor…

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Healthcare — free, top-quality, available, pick any two

In response to a commenter here I wrote the following:

Healthcare — free, top-quality, available, pick any two. I have lived under multiple healthcare systems. If the price for “free” and “available” is involuntary euthanasia of the elderly, I’ll pass. If “free” and “available” means “7th-rate”, so will I. If “free” means “whoever has the best connections gets the best quality care”, it’s just “inequality” in a different way. (Except, of course, that the “deserving” New Class of bureaucrats, academia, and “helping” professions think they will get first dibs in a system run by them.)

Israel comes the closest to a workable socialized medicine system (thanks to an unusually healthy age pyramid) and even their system is increasingly becoming two-tier: gold-plated for those able to afford private care and bare-bones for everybody else.

Old Maggie had it dead to rights: “The trouble with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people’s money.” It was 0bama’s misfortune (but also his innumeracy — a common characteristic of “wordsmith intellectuals”, in my experience) to try and implement more socialist schemes just as the state ship was reaching the shoals of bankruptcy. [I couldn’t resist the Monty Python reference :-)]

Report: Half of euthanasia in Belgium without consent

Daily Mail (h/t: multiple):

A high proportion of deaths classed as euthanasia in Belgium involved patients who did not ask for their lives to be ended, a study found.

More than 100 nurses admitted to researchers that they had taken part in ‘terminations without request or consent’.

Although euthanasia is legal in Belgium, it is governed by strict rules which state it should be carried out only by a doctor and with the patient’s permission.

The disturbing revelation  –  which shows that nurses regularly go well beyond their legal role  –  raises fears that were assisted suicides allowed in Britain, they could never be properly regulated.

Since its legalisation eight years ago, euthanasia now accounts for 2 per cent of deaths in Belgium  –  or around 2,000 a year.

The researchers found that a fifth of nurses admitted being involved in the assisted suicide of a patient.

But nearly half of these  –  120 of 248  –  also said there was no consent.

‘The nurses in our study operated beyond the legal margins of their profession,’ said the report’s authors in the Canadian Medical Association Journal.

It is likely many nurses ‘ under-reported’ their involvement for fear of admitting an illegal activity, the study said.

But it added that many were probably acting according to their patients’ wishes, ‘even if there was no explicit request’.

Last night, Dr Peter Saunders, director of the Care Not Killing campaign in Britain, said: ‘We should take a warning from this that wherever you draw the line, people will go up to it and beyond it.’

‘Once you have legalised voluntary euthanasia, involuntary euthanasia will inevitably follow,’ he added.

But pro -euthanasia group Dignity in Dying said rules that see the patient taking their own life, rather than a doctor administering the drugs, could still work.

As I have argued multiple times elsewhere: some slopes truly are too slippery to walk. If this is the only way Belgium’s model of socialized medicine can be kept solvent, what needs euthanizing is the model, not the patients.

Arbitrariness in government assistance

Conservative in the Closet has the dirt on government assistance to parents with disabled children in Canada, and how government bureaucrats decide on a semi-arbitrary basis whether or not you have too much money to need help.

For those of your without a disabled relative, it’s hard to imagine how expensive it can be to keep a disabled relative in the home.

For those dependent on technology for eating, breathing, or speaking, it gets even more expensive and complicated and life becomes form after form, endless paperwork with no inter-agency coordination. It is soul-crushing stuff.

I personally have had the experience of being told that my family made ‘too much money’ to be helped by our socialized system.

I had heard a rumour that this was an arbitrary determination, and heard of one family that had previously, succesfully sued the government to get 24 hour nursing support for a disabled child.

I was actually given an income table by a government worker assigned to “help” us.

The income table determined that we had too much income to need things like g-tube formula for my son which costs about $1500 per month.

Imagine my delight to find out that it was totally bullshit. They made up the guideline numbers-it’s not the law.

Basically, these mandarins have been arbitrarily playing G-d with families, making decisions about who can get help according to their own whims.

I believe this story has legs, and that more families like mine will pursue the government for what they are entitled to for their disabled relatives.

Welcome to the socialized medical system, where bean counters make decisions that affect the quality of your life on a daily basis, based on ZERO expertise, and ZERO legislation. Isn’t that comforting? They just made stuff up as they went along.

Read the whole thing.

NHS: patients treated in broom closets

At Tammy Bruce’s website (h/t: Dan Riehl via twitter), a long and very worthwhile blog post detailing how unsustainability problems are driving the British NHS to care levels I would consider unacceptable for dogs, let alone humans. In brief:

  • Patients are already being treated in broom closets, etc., due to lack of space
  • Still the NHS wants to cut hospital beds by as much as 1/3
  • Patient neglect is routine at some hospitals, including some top-rated ones
  • In the name of cost-cutting, doctors now need to seek approval for pretty basic procedures

But remember, as Nancy Pelosi said, we need government healthcare so ‘artistes’ don’t need to get a job so they can keep their healthcare.

Man, 22, died of neglect in UK hospital

Another great moment in government-run healthcare:

A man of 22 died in agony of dehydration after three days in a leading teaching hospital.

Kane Gorny was so desperate for a drink that he rang police to beg for their help.

They arrived on the ward only to be told by doctors that everything was under control.

The next day his mother Rita Cronin found him delirious and he died within hours.

She said nurses had failed to give him vital drugs which controlled fluid levels in his body. ‘He was totally dependent on the nurses to help him and they totally betrayed him.’

A coroner has such grave concerns about the case that it has been referred to police.

Sources say they are investigating the possibility of a corporate manslaughter charge[…].