Holly Pitt Young

NYT’s Krugman Suggests “Death Panels” to Balance Budget: On ABC’s “This Week with Christiane Amanpour,” Paul Krugman said “"Some years down the pike, we're going to get the real solution, which is going to be a combination of death panels and sales taxes. It's going to be that we're actually going to take Medicare under control, and we're going to have to get some additional revenue, probably from a VAT. But it's not going to happen now."

The Avastin Travesty: This ongoing Avastin travesty pits a cancer-fighting drug against a drug-fighting cancer — an out-of-control federal agency whose mission unashamedly includes choking off patients’ access to vital drugs. Reform should start by targeting the FDA’s power to substitute collectivized decisions for individual choice.

Health Insurers Drop Coverage For Children Ahead of New Rules: Health plans in at least four states have announced they're dropping children's coverage just days ahead of new rules created by the healthcare reform law.

Furthermore, the advocates of rationing are coming out to defend the pending FDA decision. Highlight Health, a website dedicated to “empower patients to have more productive discussions with their physicians and make informed decisions about their healthcare,” has jumped into the fight on the side of rationing. According to Walter Jessen, “the FDA should be concerned about costs. Healthcare costs endanger U.S. financial stability. Simply ignoring the skyrocketing costs of healthcare and focusing exclusively on the treatment benefits, however small — in this case the average survival benefit is zero — will have a devastating effect on the U.S. economy.” Give Jessen some credit; he is honest about his advocacy of rationing. Most supporters of the FDA’s pending decision are not.

To Jessen, the problem with Avastin is some patients do not react favorably to the drug while others react extremely favorably to the drug. That is the point – rationing will deny those who benefit access to the treatment. Health care under this regime becomes a zero sum game. Patients and doctors should have more choices and access to treatment – not less.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) could radically change our health care system this Friday. Should they move forward and deny access to treatment based on cost, Americans will suffer – and not only those inflicted with breast cancer. Rationing drugs and treatments based on cost will alter the health care landscape for decades to come.

Judge Henry Hudson’s courageous decision recognizing that ObamaCare exceeds constitutional authority with regards to mandatory purchase of health insurance is a step in the right direction but the war is not over by any means. Everyday the negative impact of the law is being felt across the nation. Hopefully Hudson’s decision becomes the straw that breaks the camel’s back.


Holly Pitt Young

Holly Pitt Young is a frequently interviewed expert in Washington, D.C. who focuses on the crossroads between policy and political engagement.