Death Panels

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Republicans (and Sarah Palin) started using the term "Death Panels" to describe part of the ACA, where a panel of 15 (called IPAB) could make life and death decisions over what treatments would be covered or not (which would control costs). Of course the left all called that untrue, but accounted for the savings these panels would bring by denying care, and far left places like Politifact called this the lie of the year in 2009. Then they screamed again when those panels that never existed were eliminated in 2018.
Issue Lie Truth
Death Panels Democrats and their media (and fact checkers) denied there was such a thing as a "Death Panels" in the ACA, and accused the Republicans of lying, calling it the lie of the year in 2009. Democrats were campaigning on the idea that the ACA had a panel of 15 (called IPAB) that would make life and death decisions over what treatments would be covered, and that would lead to huge savings and even balance the budget. When this panel was eliminated in 2018, the decried the end of the panels they claimed never existed.

Details

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In 2018, Death panels are dead. Not that they were ever completely living.

The Dems put in a fraud that they knew would never be implement called the IPAB (Independent Payment Advisory Board), which the republicans labeled the "death panel". The IPAB it was a panel of 15 would decide unilaterally on what life saving treatments would be covered or not. Since they were denying you service to what the democrats called a right, and denying those services would kill you, death panel was an unfriendly but not untrue name.

The Democrats wanted it both ways, they claimed "death panels" (and the IPAB) didn't exist (it did), but then they claimed it did exist (when it wasn't yet implmented) when it came to imaginary cost savings that it would incur by eliminating expensive treatments. It was a double flim-flam. The rational (non-democrats) knew that it would never do what it was designed to do (because politicians didn't want to get caught empowering a death panel), that meant the cost savings claimed by the Democrats was a fraud all along. And thus the losses by cutting it, are also a fraud. But it was in the ACA/Law, so once again the Republicans were right and the Democrats and their media was lying all along.

🗒️ NOTE:
There is another complexity, in there was also Section 1233 of bill HR 3200, which would have paid physicians for providing voluntary counseling to Medicare patients about living wills, advance directives, and end-of-life care options. In other words, paid agents of the government would be advising people based on the conflict of interest. If they advised people to fight some terminal or chronic maladies, it would be expensive. If they advised them on end-of-life options, they could save money. So it setup moral hazard.

Many of the fact checkers glossed over the problem, by claiming since these panels weren't mandatory, and just because they were incentivized to kill people and save costs, doesn't prove that it would. But if they didn't, then the imaginary savings the Democrats were promising wouldn't materialize either: so either way the Democrats and their fact checkers were lying.

Examples

  • Sarah Murnaghan - There was a case in 2013 of Sarah Murnaghan, where she wanted a lung transplant, and another death panel, the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS), wouldn't make an exception to their "under-12" policy to give her the life saving treatment, and Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary of Health and Human Services, refused to intervene to grant an exception to the rule. That was another example of death panels in the U.S. healthcare system, that the Democrats had denied existed, but obviously does.
  • Charlie Gard - In 2017 the leftist Press put a near blackout on the topic, because it didn't fit their political agenda, but Charlie Gard was a victim of Single-Payer "Healthcare" and an example of a "death panel": (1) A terminally ill infant presented with a rare disease (2) A couple of children with the same disease (caught in early progression) had been treated in the U.S. (3) The parents wanted to take their kid to the U.S. and try to save their child's life. (4) The UK's infamously bad NHS system did not want to spend the money -- so a death panel denied their claim. (5) The Parents raised the money for the treatment themselves and appealed. (6) The death panel decided to put the kid in a hospice and take away his ventilator until he died. (7) Cost savings achieved... but don't call it a death panel.
  • Alfie Evans - In 2018 a repeat of Charlie Gard also happened and was also suppressed by the leftist media. (1) Alfie Evans, another child with a rare a debilitating disease (2) the UK's NHS decided it would be in their best financial interest if Alfie just died and stopped costing them money (3) The Parents fought and lost a legal battle against euthanizing their son (4) The Parents appealed to Italy and got him Italian citizenship to get around the order, and the Italian Consolate warned the NHS against murdering one of their citizens (5) The NHS removed his ventilator anyways, against the Parents wishes. Cost savings achieved. Just don't call it a death panel.


Conclusion

The most insulting thing is that congress is not supposed to be able to do this under the law (create agencies like the IPAB) and defer their legaslative responsibilities to create law (regulations) to another group. It's called the nondelegation doctrine, not that progressives on the court or legislature have ever paid attention to it... never let the law of the land get in the way of a political agenda.

But anyways, this the Death Panels are dead. Which is impressive if you're a Democrat, as they claimed they never existed IRL, unless you were talking about imaginary accounting tricks, where they accounted for it. And while I'm not completely against the spirit of it (having some agency to decide what is effective healthcare or not), the political implementation was never ever going to work.

Every media agency, political pundit, and politician that claimed either there was no death panels, or that we would see the cost savings from having one, is proven a liar, fool or polemic. We just call them Democrats or Politicians: it's all the same thing.

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📚 References