And while we’re on the subject of rationed health care

Faced with an epidemic, England is already planning on rationing:

Thousands of patients could be denied NHS treatment and left to die under ‘worst-case’ emergency plans for a swine-flu epidemic.

The blueprint would force doctors to ‘play God’ and prioritise intensive-care treatment for those most likely to benefit  –  ruling out patients with problems such as advanced cancer.

The ‘scoring’ system would be introduced if half the population became infected with flu.


The scale of their concern is highlighted in the Department of Health’s report: Pandemic Flu – Managing Demand and Capacity in Health Care Organisations.

Detailing plans to ration hospital treatment, the report warns that if half the population were infected, 6,600 patients per week would be competing for just under 4,000 intensive-care beds.

Around 85 per cent of those beds could already be full with day-to-day emergencies.

To allocate ventilators, beds and intensive-care equipment doctors would have to ‘score’ patients on their health and prognosis as well as seriousness of their conditions.

Those who failed to respond to treatment would be subject to ‘reverse triage’ – in which they were taken off ventilators and left in NHS ‘dying rooms’ with only painkillers to ease their suffering.

Patients with underlying illness such as advanced cancer or the last stage of heart, lung or liver failure  –  and those unlikely to survive even if they were given treatment  –  would not be given an intensive-care bed.

Definitely what we want over here — right, folks?

Actually, I’ll freely concede that we probably would do precisely the same if we had an epidemic.  In an epidemic situation, rationing is inevitable, because an overwhelmed system cannot cope.  What I’d like to think, though, is that our system will be less overwhelmed than the creaking National Health Service, which already does rationing to cope with its inefficiencies.

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    What a combo – C Rations for an A Strain of influenza.

  • billm99uk

    In health care you have a situation where demand massively outstrips supply by a very large margin, so you’re inevitably going to have rationing of one sort or another. You only have choice about the method of that rationing. In the US you have a system where it’s rationed by money, in the UK by bureaucratic fiat. Take your pick as to which is the least unfair.

    P.S. Yes I know neither system is that simple, I was just making a crashing generalization to illustrate a point 😉

  • suek

    An anti-Obama health care article from CNN for heaven’s sakes!! Short, very concise, very handy – “Five Freedoms You’d Lose In Health Care Reform”

  • suek

    Here’s another worthwhile read.

    I can’t believe people _really_ think this is a good thing.

  • Ymarsakar

    People can be made to believe anything the propagandist wants them to believe. This is the power of propaganda, its art and skill.

    The Left will never be beaten until their enemies learn to use such weapons against the Left.


    suek, thanks for the links.

    You’ll have to excuse me while I busy myself with the 23rd Psalm.

    It’s no accident that Congress wants to push this through asap. It’s summer, people are distracted, kids are home, parents are in the next few weeks getting themselves in gear for September, school, regular routine and some are even taking little vacations.

    Short of dropping pamphlets on the entire population along with wailing sirens and every PA system in America activated alerting the masses and then actually hoping or believing they would actually think and understand the long term ramifications … this is a freight train going at full speed and it’s only a matter of time (age of one) til you are stuck on the railroad track, door locks jammed and no way out…………….

    The Lord is my …

  • suek

    Heh. Sadie…

    I went to Catholic schools for most of my education. Fifth grade, however, we had just been transferred to Wright Patterson AFB, and my parents were unfamiliar with the area, so I was registered in the local public school. For the first time in my life, the school day opened with the Pledge of Allegiance and then a reading of the 23rd Psalm. In public school yet! The teacher went around the class, each student read one verse, then the next student read the next verse. Etc. The next morning, the student who started the reading was the next student after the one who had finished the reading the day before. No choice. It was a reading out loud exercise, as well as a reading of the bible exercise. No change in Psalms – always the 23rd Psalm. No discussion about the psalm or the bible either, just reading. But still, after all these years, the words still stick in my mind. Early education/indoctrination is important. Yes, I said indoctrination – what else would you call it? but the opposite is the desire to have a child a blank slate to be written upon when they reach a certain level of maturity – and that just isn’t a possibility. Those who complain about indoctrination – on either side – are really saying that they disagree with the type of indoctrination. They want _their _ version instead of what the children are getting.

    And, by the way, the only time in my education where we read from the bible. Catholics aren’t big on reading directly from the bible. Well, we do, but only the New Testament. And only on Sundays. Other than that, you’re on your own. The Old Testament has a lot of wisdom, too. Mankind hasn’t changed much in the last 5K years or so. Same faults.

  • suek

    This is worth a read – found the link in a comment on Astute Bloggers.

    The reason it’s interesting, is that it’s statements by doctors who want to leave where they are in order to go somewhere else on _why_ they want to go somewhere else. People with the brains and drive to become doctors are smart enough to evaluate the potential job satisfaction they’re likely to get in given conditions. If people think young people are going to put in the effort necessary to become doctors only to be restricted in practice and income, they better think twice.


    The 23rd Pslam obviously had a lot of appeal and crossed over into popular usage in the Jewish community. I also remember Bible portions being read (Old Testament) in public schools as a kid (pre-ACLU days, of course) along with the Pledge of Allegiance (both versions – indivisble and under G-d).