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Friday, November 20, 2009

Sarah Palin: Cancer Screenings - Rational Advice or Rationed Care?

It was a breath of fresh air to finally hear the Democrats admit to their health care bill as “a lot of show and tell and razzmatazz,” (see Democrat talking points, in reference to my book). At least now we’re all on the same page when discussing the problems with their monstrous government health care “reform” plan. 

Now, tonight, more disconcerting news – the New York Times reports of new guidelines to scale back cervical cancer screenings. The recommendation from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists comes on the heels of another recommendation to limit breast cancer screenings with mammograms. There are many questions unanswered for me, but one which immediately comes to mind is whether costs have anything to do with these recommendations. The current health care debate elicits great concern because of its introduction of socialized medicine in America and the inevitable rationed care. We need to carefully watch this debate as it coincides with Capitol Hill’s debate and determine whether we are witnessing the early stages of that rationed care before the Senate bill is rushed through as well.

Another question is why these women-focused cancers are seemingly receiving substandard attention at a time when proactive health and fitness should be the message. Every woman should encourage rigorous debate to ensure that our collective voices are heard. We are paying attention to Washington’s health care proposals, and we want to hear what helps patients the most. 

We need answers: Is early screening not saving lives? Why do doctors’ groups disagree? Did costs play any role in these decisions to change the recommendations on breast and cervical cancer screenings? We need assurances that everything we’ve heard this week about fewer tests for women’s cancers is a result of patient-focused research and providing the best care for the right reasons, and not because of bureaucratic pressure to control costs. 

Obviously the first thought that comes to mind when hearing of these new recommendations from bureaucratic panels is “rationed care.” It’s fair – and healthy – to ask if that’s what Washington has in mind with a government-controlled takeover of a health care system.

- Sarah Palin

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I live in DC and a I can be reached at sarah2012gop@yahoo.com