Monday, February 24, 2014

 Power of ObamaCare Personal Stories

Personal stories have the power to persuade.


As the ObamaCare debate rages,  expect to hear more personal stories  of kudos and woes.

To be effective, these stories, positive or negative,  must have the ring of truth and  must spring from an authoritative source.

That’s why Stephen Blackwood’s  story of his mother is so compelling (“ObamaCare and My Mother’s Cancer Medicine,” Wall Street Journal,  February 23, 2014). 

Blackstone is president of Ralston College in Savannah, Georgia.    His mother manages the Family Medical Center in Virginia Beach,  Virginia.

At 49, his mother was diagnosed with carcinoid cancer.  She responded well to Sandostatin.   She received 2 injections each month at the cost of $14,000,     

At first her plan covered the cost.     But  the plan  was cancelled when it did not comply with ObamaCare’s criteria for what a plan ought to be.   She switched plans that complied,  but then the 2nd plan said it would not pay for Sandostatin.  

 His mother could not afford the cost.   So much for the Affordable Care Act. She has since  been unable to find a plan that will pay.

Blackwood  asks:  Will this injustice be remedied. for her and millions of others?  Or is my mother to die because she can no  longer afford the treatment that keeps her alive?”

Blackwood sadly  concludes:  The ‘Affordable Care Act’ is a brutal , Procrustean disaster.  In principle it violates  the irreducible particularity of human life, and in practice it will cause many individuals to suffer and die. We can do better and we must.'

This is  man of integrity and intelligence  talking, and his mother knows the health system well.   We ought to listen to him and her story. 

By the way, I looked  up “Procrustean.”  It means, “Producing or designed  to produce conformity by ruthless or arbitrary means.”    The “means” are “mean” here, and the Obama administration ought to acknowledge that fact and so should the health plans.

Tweet: ObamaCare, unfortunately and perhaps unwittingly, makes It difficult for health plans to make some life-saving cancer drugs unaffordable.

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