Health care

My struggle with Dupuytren’s Disease

My struggle with Dupuytren’s Disease

If you've wondered why I seem to disappear once in a while, here is why. Dupuytren's Contracture, or Dupuytren's Disease, is "... a benign condition which causes a tightening of the flesh beneath the skin of the palm and can result in permanently bent fingers." I am afflicted with this, in a fairly severe manner. It usually starts with small nodules in the palms. Then, in some people, cords develop in the palm and fingers. In some of these people, the cords tighten, which is what causes the fingers to contract. In my experience, these cords are very strong. It…
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Inspector General evaluates Obamacare website

Inspector General evaluates Obamacare website

The HHS Inspector General has released an evaluation of the Obamacare website HealthCare.gov, shedding light on the performance of former Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius. The Office of Inspector General for the Department of Health and Human Services has released a report titled HealthCare.gov: Case Study of CMS Management of the Federal Marketplace. An excerpt from the executive summary holds the main points: What We Found The development of HealthCare.gov faced a high risk of failure, given the technical complexity required, the fixed deadline, and a high degree of uncertainty about mission, scope, and funding. Still, we found that HHS and…
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Medicaid found to increase, not decrease, emergency room usage

This is an astonishing finding, and contrary to what the conventional wisdom has told us about health care. For years, it has been the number one talking point of Obamacare supporters. People who are uninsured end up getting costly care from hospitals’ emergency rooms. “Those of us with health insurance are also paying a hidden and growing tax for those without it -- about $1,000 per year that pays for [the uninsureds’] emergency room and charitable care,” said President Obama in 2009. Obamacare, the President told us, would solve that problem by covering the uninsured, thereby driving premiums down. A…
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Study: Kansas premiums to spike following Obamacare rollout

From Kansas Watchdog. Study: Kansas premiums to spike following Obamacare rollout By Travis Perry ON THE RISE: A new report from the Heritage Foundation says Obamacare premiums are significantly higher in Kansas compared to average rates before the rollout of the new health care law. By Travis Perry, Kansas Watchdog OSAWATOMIE — Good news: Kansas landed in the top 10 in a recent study conducted by the conservative Heritage Foundation! Bad news: It’s for massive insurance premium hikes because ofObamacare. Kinda puts a damper on things, huh? As I said, before dashing your optimism with harsh reality, Kansas is among the top 10 states to…
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ObamaCare chart updated

Republicans of the Joint Economic Committee of the U.S. Congress have released an update of a chart to help us navigate ObamaCare. (Click on it for a larger version.) From the July 2010 press release accompanying the original chart: "Four months after U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi famously declared 'We have to pass the bill so you can find out what's in it,' a congressional panel has released the first chart illustrating the 2,801 page health care law President Obama signed into law in March. Developed by the Joint Economic Committee minority, led by U.S Senator Sam Brownback of Kansas…
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ObamaCare employer mandate delayed, start of train wreck?

Scheduled to take effect on January 1, the employer mandate portion of the Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare) has been delayed for one year. Curiously, this announcement was made on an obscure Treasury Department blog, along with articles titled "Meeting, and Exceeding, Our Small Business Procurement Goals in FY 2012" and "In Case You Missed It: Top Executives Say U.S. Is #1 for Foreign Direct Investment." The employer mandate requires those who employ more than 50 full time-equivalent employees to provide insurance or pay a penalty. Cato Institute's Michael D. Tanner notes the general problem, and a specific problem based on…
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The future of Obamacare, now he tells us

This is a sad commentary on the state of politics and governance in the U.S., from the Boston Globe: Unencumbered by the political pressures of a reelection campaign, Baucus is in a position to call out both the failure of federal officials to prepare for implementing Obamacare as well as the unintended consequences of its complex regulations. A short while ago, before U.S. Senator Max Baucus announced his retirement, U.S. Representative Mike Pompeo of Wichita noticed the incongruity of Baucus complaining about a law he passed, tweeting the following: If only someone had said something! MT @michael_steel: Now he tells…
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ObamaCare explained: What could go wrong?

An Illinois State Senate candidate who happens to be a physician diagnoses and explains the problems with the Affordable Care Act, also known as ObamaCare. Here's a transcription of what Barbara Bellar said: Let me get this straight: We’re going to be gifted with a healthcare plan we are forced to purchase, and fined if we don’t, which purportedly covers at least 10 million more people, without adding a single new doctor, but provides for 16,000 new IRS agents, written by a committee whose chairman says he doesn’t understand it, passed by a congress that didn’t read it but exempted…
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Rationing of health care, now and on the horizon

A Wall Street Journal article explains that -- contrary to the promises of President Barack Obama and supporters of his health care plan -- rationing of health care is happening and will become more pervasive. Citing the story of Avastin (see below), the authors write "The Avastin story is emblematic of the government's broader agenda to ration care based on cost and politics. Once ObamaCare comes into full force, such rationing will be pervasive. When the government sees insufficient benefit, all but the wealthiest and most politically connected will have to go without." The article explains the doctrine of "comparative…
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Obama health care rejected in Missouri election

What are we to think when President Obama's signature legislative achievement is highly unpopular with Americans? Scott Rasmussen has written: "One of the more amazing aspects of the health-care debate is how steady public opinion has remained. Despite repeated and intense sales efforts by the president and his allies in Congress, most Americans consistently oppose the plan that has become the centerpiece of this legislative season." Now we have election results that show that Americans -- Missourians, anyway -- don't like what they see in the Obama health care plan. The Wall Street Journal's James Taranto reports on the Missouri…
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Dr. Milton Wolf at AFP Kansas summit

At the Kansas Defending the American Dream Summit 2010, produced by Americans for Prosperity-Kansas, Dr. Milton Wolf addressed the crowd on health care issues. Wolf is a physician and second cousin to President Barack Obama. "Three months ago I had never been to a political rally," he told the audience. He started a website -- The Wolf Files -- and became involved. He told the audience of some of the personal attacks he's received. "Freedom isn't free, and liberty cannot be a spectator sport." The government takeover of health care is really a cover for an assault on our freedom,…
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Bigger danger of healthcare bill: the arrogance of Congress

By Eric O'Keefe. We may never fully know the damage that will be done by the massive health care bill Congress passed on Sunday, but one thing is certain: It will lead to lower-quality care at higher costs. Dozens of new health boards will come on line in the next few years, as bureaucrats gradually take control of our health care system. Who knows how many bright college students will decide to avoid medical careers because they don’t want to follow orders from these bureaucrats? As alarming as some of the bill’s provisions are, what’s more dangerous is the arrogance…
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After U.S. health care reform, where will Canadians go?

Now that the Democrats' health care reform package has passed Congress and is sure to be signed into law, wealthy Canadians will need to start looking for somewhere else to travel for surgery. Earlier this year Danny Williams, the premier of the Canadian province of Newfoundland traveled to Miami for heart valve surgery. As Sally C. Pipes explains in a San Francisco Chronicle article: "With his trip, Williams joined a long list of Canadians who have decided that they prefer American medicine to their own country's government-run health system when their lives are on the line." In an interview defending…
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Health care about to get worse

A good summary of the problems with American health care, and of what the future holds is from Competitive Enterprise Institute's Gregory Conko. In his piece Health Care Crisis About to Get a Whole Lot Worse he writes: Most of the problems in America’s health care system -- high and rising prices, lack of consistent and reliable access for millions, rampant cost shifting, and an inability to distinguish between effective and ineffective services or between high and low quality, to name just a few -- stem not from some supposed market failure, but primarily from existing government interventions in the…
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To some, Democrats not bold enough, despite Massachusetts results

A coalition of liberal political action groups has released a poll that contradicts the conventional wisdom stemming from Tuesday's election. The poll, conducted after Republican Scott Brown's victory in the United States Senate election in Massachusetts, was sponsored by Progressive Change Campaign Committee, Democracy for America, and MoveOn.org. According to a communique from Democracy for America, Democrats in Washington should "Be bold, fight for more change -- not less, and pass healthcare with a public option." The message speaks of "Stay-at-Home Voters and Obama-Voting Independents" as a new set of swing voters. These voters, DFA claims, were responsible for Brown's…
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Wall Street Journal on government health care

The Wall Street Journal has compiled its editorials and op-eds into a collection titled The WSJ Guide to ObamaCare. It's an invaluable collection of reporting and analysis. For example: The German model, promoted by American liberals as a model to follow? "Alas, the German system is starting to come apart at the financial seams." (The Stressed German Model: It took the Germans 125 years to figure out that their health-care system doesn't work) On learning from the states: "Like participants in a national science fair, state governments have tested variants on most of the major components of the health-care reform…
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Failure of one program doesn’t justify forming another

The blogger at the KRA got it just right in the post Liberal-socialists ignore government failure in insuring children. It seems that at a recent rally in Johnson County, a sign said there were 58,000 uninsured children in Kansas. The blogger points out "But doesn’t the state of Kansas already have a program in place that is supposed to insure children when their family can’t afford to do so? Of course, it’s called Kansas Healthwave!" At the national level a similar problem exists: people are eligible for government programs, but they don't sign up. As I wrote in Uninsured count…
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In Winfield, citizens don’t agree with their opinion leaders

On Wednesday the Winfield Daily Courier printed an editorial titled ‘Tea party’ bunch is going to extreme. While criticizing a move made by some Kansas legislators, it uses loaded language like "in full Glenn Beck mode," "they look silly," "appealing to prejudice rather than reason," and "should just laugh at the 'tea party' jesters." The anonymous author of this piece -- probably Dave Seaton, identified in the newspaper's website as "responsible for the Courier's editorial content" -- seems to be more than a bit out of touch with readers, at least those who have left comments to the editorial. One…
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