As an individual who has spent over a decade in government, it sickens me to read and hear how President Obama's health care plan is going to kill people! Seriously. Today, I read an article in the New York Post about how his plan would eliminate children with Down syndrome because those OBGYN's who are receiving federal money MAY be required to test for genetic malformations. (For some odd reason, I'm unable to hotlink the article. Here is the information if you'd like to read it. ObamaCare's brave new world - Disabled just won't make it to birth By MEGHAN CLYNE http://www.nypost.com/)
In my opinion, the article is wrong on this point. There WILL ALWAYS be persons with Down syndrome because there will always be moms like me that choose LIFE! In fact, I'd go out there and predict there will be more persons born with Down syndrome now than ever before for several reasons ~ 1. people are choosing to have children later in life and they are better prepared for those children (statistics prove this) 2. services like early intervention, educational inclusion, American's with Disabilities Act are now available and 3. acceptance of differently-abled persons is on the rise. Amen. To say that persons' with Down syndrome will be eliminated because of the availability of a test is absurd!
The article also mentions how Sarah Palin is worried that her son Trig won't get the end of life services he needs under this plan ~ he would be denied treatment. In my opinion, she's wrong. Any person with Down syndrome already has or should have federally funded health care ~ Medicaid. Are they being denied now? I doubt it but I also know there are exceptions to every rule and we don't have a perfect system. I've looked through this House bill and in fact, read the specific page she is referring to and that is not my take on it. My reading of this provision is it will GIVE end of life services to persons that would not otherwise have them - not deny them. See page 425, line 19 of HR 3200 and come to your own conclusion.
The link for HR 3200, the Energy and Commerce Committee bill is http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=111_cong_bills&docid=f:h3200ih.txt.pdf
The link to the Senate HELP committee bill is http://dodd.senate.gov/multimedia/2009/BillText.pdf.
Here is a side by side comparison of the bills I received from NDSC, released by Georgetown University http://ccf.georgetown.edu/index/health-reform-side-by-side
The only part of the article that I agree with, is the discussion of a survey of 1,100 mothers who had received a prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome. Brian Skotko, a clinical fellow in genetics at Children's Hospital Boston, was told by "the majority of mothers that physicians were often providing inaccurate, incomplete and in the worst cases offensive information about Down Syndrome." This is not a surprise. It's the reason why we now have the Kennedy-Brownback Prenatally and Postnatally Diagnosed law "that ensures that pregnant women receiving a positive prenatal test result and parents receiving a postnatal diagnosis will be more likely to receive up-to-date, scientific information about life expectancy, clinical course, intellectual and functional development, and prenatal and postnatal treatment options ."
This health care plan is igniting fury around the country and the debate is what makes our country great. I'll end by saying this ~ throughout our country's history the federal government has been the defender of human and civil rights. Responsible for the general welfare of it's citizens. The federal government stepped up to the plate and ended slavery, gave women the right to vote, ended desegregation, and gave those with disabilities a voice and equal opportunities/rights. Every step of the way, the federal government was criticized and passionate debate was heard on the streets of this country. Each and every time we emerged a stronger and better nation. God bless America.