by Jim Campbell
Obama Care has already begun to interfere with FDA approval for cancer treatment; the FDA advisory panel recently decided to remove the indication for the treatment of metastatic breast cancer because of modest increases in prolonging life, with no demonstration of an overall survival benefit.
Avastin® is one of an entire different classification of drugs designed to treat a patient’s individual tumor. It works as an angiogenesis inhibitor that means its mechanism of action is to shut down blood flow to metastatic tumors.
With the possible exception of brain cancer, the vast majority of patients dying from metastatic disease do so because metastases appear in the liver, lung and bone, with resultant organ failure, ultimately resulting in death.
Fortunately, many breast cancer patients have had over all increased survival with Avastin combined with Taxol, the current standard in breast cancer treatment.
Should patients be denied treatment and reimbursement for a medication that is believed to be, based on a study, modestly effective? Even if Avastin’s effects are only ‘modest,’ what is the ‘yardstick’ for judging the acceptable life extension of a cancer victim and who should define the yardstick?
This is the elephant in the room that people refuse to acknowledge: Insurance companies that are currently reimbursing for Avastin and Taxol for breast cancer …. and the government may not want to fork out the cash under its new health care law.
Buried among the more that 2000 pages of legislation in H.R. 3590 is section 262a, which essentially allows “The Secretary of Health and Human Services,” currently Kathleen Sibelius, to, among other things, determine (III) the availability and effectiveness of pharmacotherapy’s and immunizations to treat and prevent any illness and (IV) any other criteria, including the needs of children and other vulnerable populations, that the Secretary considers appropriate.
Excuse me, the “Secretary,” a government bureaucrat, is now stepping between the physician and their patient? Does Sarah Palin’s “death panels” ring a bell?
Clearly, the current administration will be rationing resources under Obama Care, as do insurance companies. The primary difference is that health insurance providers must return a profit to investors and answer to them.
It’s now very clear that the current administration believes it doesn’t answer to ‘We the People’ – in spite of the mid-term elections’ overwhelming rejection of Obama’s policies. Clearly, we are supposed to blindly follow this administration as it seeks greater control over our lives, deaths and freedoms.
The Obama administration has been very successful in demonizing health care insurance companies for their excess profits when a closer examination reveals, according to a recent article in the Wall Street Journal, among others, net profit margins in the order of 4.5-5% are industry wide.
Remember, a lie told often enough becomes the truth (often attributed to Goebbels, Hitler’s minister of propaganda when, in fact, the quote is attributed to Lenin).
An additional question yet to be answered, will Big Pharma and Bio Tech companies continue to invest in the development of life-enhancing, as well as life saving therapies? Under this new system why should they? It’s no secret that break-through therapies come from the United States where scientific risk is rewarded. Will that be the case in the future?
If the new health care legislation is not overturned by the courts, or completely defunded by the new Republican majority in the House of Representatives, the future of our health care system will also mandate generic substitution, substitution within class, and denial of costly treatments.
Do we need more arguments why the recently passed health care bill must be repealed? It’s not about health care; it’s about health care denial and rationing. Sarah Palin had it right all along…
That’s my story and I’m sticking to it, I’m J.C.
Representative Paul Ryan R(-WI) points out to President Obama during the “Health Care Summit” last summer, that the facts and figures proposed by the President’s health care proposal are disingenuous.