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December 06, 2009

Death Panel in California Ends Mammogram Subsidies for Women Between 40 and 50

The California Health and Human Services Agency is ending mammogram subsidies for low-income women under age 50. Under the old rules, women unable to pay could get a subsidy for annual breast-cancer screening starting at 40.

"More than 50 percent of the women we give breast exams and mammograms to are in their 40s," Riley said. "The majority of our current breast cancer survivors are women in their 40s."

The state's decision, announced Dec. 1 and effective Jan. 1, follows a controversial federal recommendation last month that mammograms before the age of 50 are generally not needed.

However, the public health department also linked the change to California's budget woes.

The federal recommendation, made Nov. 16 by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, has encountered strong opposition.

The task force later retreated a bit, adjusting its recommendation to state that mammograms for women ages 40 to 49 should be considered by their doctors on an individual basis.

Lessons:

(1) Put your healthcare in the government's hands and there's nothing to stop it from deciding you shouldn't have as much care as you'd like.

(2) There is no appeal from the government's decision, except to make a political ruckus. This works fine if you have a high-profile problem like breast cancer. If you have something nobody else ever heard of, you're SOL.

(3) Governments don't know the first thing about budgeting or controlling costs.

(4) Democrats are lying when they say they'll step up preventive care to bring down costs. The California death panel is just kicking the can ten years down the road. Breast cancers caught early are more treatable and inexpensive than breast cancers caught late. Somehow I doubt that a woman unable to pay for a mammogram this year is somehow gonna get the dough to pay for cancer treatments ten years from now. Guess who she's gonna ask for help? Not to mention, there's an enormous cost saving if she happens to drop dead before she's diagnosed. Just saying...


*Headline shamelessly stolen from GatewayPundit.


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posted by Gabriel Malor at 04:29 PM

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