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The Forum > General Discussion > Life is sacred but is it worth US$300 a day?

Life is sacred but is it worth US$300 a day?

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"You have advanced kidney cancer. Ö A drug called Sutent slows the spread of the cancer and may give you an extra six months, but at a cost of $54,000. Is a few more months worth that much?"

See: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/19/magazine/19healthcare-t.html?pagewanted=1&em

Let's rephrase that question. Should Medicare pay US$300 per day to prolong the life of a terminally ill cancer patient by 6 months?

Britain's NHS originally said "no" to the same question; then reversed itself under public pressure.

Britain's National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) puts a price of 30,000 pounds (About A$60,000) on one year of life. If the ESTIMATED cost of a life-extending treatment exceeds 30,000 pounds per annum the NHS will not fund it.

Some questions for posters to consider:

--What price limit should Medicare place on life-extending treatments?

--What obligation do the recipients of Medicare benefits have to keep themselves in shape by, for example, keeping their weight under control, exercising reasonably and moderating their alcohol intake?

I also have a modest proposal for posters to consider.

People who do keep themselves in good shape save taxpayer's money. Should they be rewarded with a $100 per year "wellness" bonus?

Parents who ensure their children eat healthily and exercise regularly could get a $200 per annum bonus.

I think the distinction of collecting your wellness bonus at a public ceremony would give the scheme an impact that exceeds the relatively modest amounts involved.

Let's declare 28 September to be National Wellness Day and hand out wellness bonuses in public ceremonies.

Also, wellness bonuses should be doubled in any year in which the Melbourne Demons win the Grand Final.
Posted by stevenlmeyer, Sunday, 19 July 2009 11:39:29 AM
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who dares to put money before life...is not living to live but living for others to die...but as usual the question is phrased incorrectly

the real question is how come those claiming to be in the healing business are in business to make money from others sickness...the story behind the story is fat cats need their pay...and getting gross govt subsidy..gets their bonus

people actualy are getting rich..by others getting sick...thus because of the motivation for gain..are suppressing cheap cures,..just like the petro industrty activly suppresses new inventions..[for over a century]...so too the industries that make huge gain..from others pain

there are hunderds of cancer cures..[but cures get no funding...because a cure means../another cash cow dies...same with tooth decay..that could easilly be cured by an international vacination capmpane..to kill the bacterisal strain..causing tooth rot...but no...special intrests dont want that..thus no cure..cause curtes hurt the bottum line

just as researchers..found..the flue strain..that now is the basis for the pig flue...that is released and beat up only so govts will buy up vacines for compulsory vacinations...and lo the orders are in..yet the cure..preceeded the flue by 6 mths...lol

that vacines allways..somehow..seem to contain live virus..causing real outbreaks...thats the unspoken cause of most epidemics..compulsory vaCINATIONS...read the past links

just as polio virus vacination..in africa/russia,..was the vector for the homo/monkey disease..aids

there are many countries..have their orders for the bird/swine/human hybred flue vacine in..[just like the bird flue..saw govt's spend...BILLIONS on buying up tamiflue...and that other non cure

that now..suprise..suprise is out of date...all that money poured into a scare campain...sure is a nice little earner..from others pain/misery/fear..thats the real crime

those who favour others dying..are eugenisists..regardless of their apparent motivations..like cost...scratch the surface and see the roots of eugenics in the question
Posted by one under god, Sunday, 19 July 2009 2:51:19 PM
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You are fascinating Steven.

Oh what about fines for people who marry into families that have a genetic disposition to cancer and other diseases and go ahead to reproduce?

And if a parent of a fat child is spotted at Maccas they could be arrested.

Hey make it illegal to drive to any destination within one kilometer of your home.

And tax back annually to all the smokers that paid for everyone else to get well in hospitals that have not yet had a smoking related disease.

Iím gonna stop myself now but I have a ton of them.[smile]
Posted by The Pied Piper, Sunday, 19 July 2009 5:06:04 PM
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"those who favour others dying..are eugenisists..regardless of their apparent motivations..like cost...scratch the surface and see the roots of eugenics in the question"

Hello OUG, I never heard that word before. These are people in favour of others dying naturally or in favour of not medicating...?

I am watching three small souls have an arguement about a TV program, one wee one has stomped off, arms folded and bottom lip well out. One is sitting looking a bit sorry about the situation, the other is laughing at the display.

The sulky one is now pretending they don't care and are having a mountain of fun without the other two... nah one fell for it and has gone to join the fun. Ah and now the other one is up and three small souls are playing and giggling. Yep all that in the time it took to type slowly as I watched.

What has this to do with anything? Nuffink.[smile]
Posted by The Pied Piper, Sunday, 19 July 2009 6:46:46 PM
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Dear Steven,

Today, patients can be
hooked up for days, months, or years to machines
that sustain their lives, and this step may be
taken even if they're in constant pain or even
if they are permanently comatose.

Thus, technologies and medicines that were intended to save
people from unnecessary death may actually have the
effect of depriving them of a dignified death.

As you point out Steven, terminally ill patients
can now be kept alive through medicines, artificial
respiration, intravenous feeding, electronic heart
stimulation, mechanical organ substitutes, or even
transplants of body parts from other people or animals.
Consequently, medical dilemmas can become moral and
legal ones as well.

'Life is sacred but is it worth US $300 a day?'
Let's weigh things up...

It's cost the taxpayers over $2 million dollars
in 2007-08, to maintain the lifestyles of
5 former Prime Ministers - (and that's not counting their
huge yearly pensions).
No one seems to question this expense.
Are the lives of ordinary ill taxpayers worth less?

Having said that, however -
It's a decision that should be made by the
patient themselves - what they desire (on the advice
of their medical professional),
and by those who love them most dearly.
Will the preservation of life help the patient?
And, is it desired by the patient and their family?
Those are questions that can only be answered by the people
involved.

Personally, I would only pursue a vigorous
therapy if it would benefit and help the terminally
ill patient. If the patient however -
had lost their functional and mental independence,
I would choose to let them die in peace and serenity.

However, Physicians are expected to do all they can to
sustain life, so I'm not sure how much say either I or
the family members would actually have in such a situation.
We may have to go along with whatever the hospital or the
specialist recommended.

You ask tough questions Steven.
I pray that neither of us will ever be placed in a situation
where we'll have to deal with them.
Posted by Foxy, Sunday, 19 July 2009 7:03:48 PM
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I'd like to know why it is that this drug costs so much. Given the huge profits made by Big Pharma, surely they could offset the R&D costs of such a drug against the squillions they make on all the other drugs they push.

Surely governments are in a position, via their regulation and oversight of health and medical services, to put a stop to this extortion?

I think you're asking the wrong questions about this issue, Steven.
Posted by CJ Morgan, Sunday, 19 July 2009 7:10:08 PM
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