Saturday, June 7, 2008
Oregon Offers to Pay to Kill, but Not to Treat Cancer Patient
By Tim Waggoner
SALEM, Oregon, June 4, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Lung cancer patient,
Barbara Wagner, was recently notified that her oncologist-prescribed
medication that would slow the growth of cancer would not be covered
by the Oregon Health Plan; the plan, however, she was informed, would
cover doctor-assisted suicide should she wish to kill herself.
"Treatment of advanced cancer that is meant to prolong life, or
change the course of this disease, is not a covered benefit of the
Oregon Health Plan," read the letter notifying Wagner of the health
Wagner says she was shocked by the decision. "To say to someone,
we'll pay for you to die, but not pay for you to live, it's cruel,"
she told the Register-Guard. "I get angry. Who do they think they
This past Monday morning, however, Wagner had reason to rejoice. A
representative from the company that manufactures the treatment
called the cancer patient to say they would give her the medication
"I am just so thrilled," she said. "I am so relieved and so happy."
Dr. Walter Shaffer, medical director of the state Division of Medical
Assistance Programs, which administers the Oregon Health Plan,
attempted to defend the health plan's decision. "We can't cover
everything for everyone," he said. "We try to come up with polices
that provide the most good for the most people." Shaffer then
addressed a priority list that had been developed to ration health
care. "There's some desire on the part of the framers of this list to
not cover treatments that are futile," he said, "or where the
potential benefit to the patient is minimal in relation to the
expense of providing the care."
According to an AP story on Wagner's case, local oncologists in
Oregon have said that, despite the Health Services Commission's
assertion that they were just clarifying policies already in place,
healthcare practitioners have observed a sizable shift in policy in
the way recurrent cancer is treated in the state. Increasingly, say
local oncologists, sufferers of recurrent cancer are not receiving
coverage for chemotherapy. They are always, however, eligible for
state-funded assisted suicide.
Wesley J. Smith, a prominent conservative bioethicist, says that he
was not surprised by the events.
"We have been warning for years that this was a possibility in
Oregon. Medicaid is rationed, meaning that some treatments are not
covered. But assisted suicide is always covered. And now, Barbara
Wagner was faced with that very scenario."
Smith also mentioned a similar circumstance that had occurred in the
past: "This isn't the first time this has happened either. A few
years ago a patient who needed a double organ transplant was denied
the treatment but would have been eligible for state-financed
Wednesday, June 4, 2008
Smoking ban constitutional, Will County judge rules
Violators lose case against Illinois law
- By Emma Graves Fitzsimmons |Tribune reporter
A Will County judge said the state's ban is constitutional after a challenge Tuesday by several residents who were cited with violating the law.
Their attorney, Dan O'Day, argued that the law was too broad, but Judge Marzell Richardson upheld the constitutionality of the Smoke-Free Illinois Act. After Richardson rejected two additional motions to dismiss the case, O'Day said his five clients want to move forward with a jury trial.
"It's a ridiculous law," said John Hoglund of Joliet, who was cited at a Rockdale bar. "It's a violation of our rights."
Hoglund and two others were cited April 5 at E Street Bar and Grill. Five people were cited March 7 during two raids at Pa
ulie's Pub and Woody's bar, both in Joliet.
The law takes aim at secondhand smoke by banning smoking inside public buildings, college dormitories and most businesses. County health officials and police perform random compliance checks after receiving three complaints about a restaurant or bar, officials said.
Individuals face fines of $100 to $250 for the first offense, and a business must be fined at least $250. If a bar is cited a second time, the owner could be fined up to $2,500.
A man pleaded guilty Tuesday to violating the ban and agreed to pay a $235 fine, but others decided to fight the citations.
"It's a matter of principle now," said Jack Jackson of , who received a smoking citation at Paulie's along with two buddies.
O'Day also argued that the traffic ticket police used to issue the citation was not appropriate, and that the citations should be heard in front of an administrative agency instead of a criminal hearing. The judge dismissed both motions. Another hearing is scheduled for Wednesday.
Paul Gans, the owner of E Street, attended the hearing though he has not yet been cited for the incident at his bar in April. He wanted to support his patrons and had hoped the judge would de- cide the law was unconstitutional.
"Business has been down since January because of the smoking ban," he said.
Tuesday, June 3, 2008
I did read Clinton is willing to run as Obama's VP. Well, in the case of USA smokers, if he wins in November, that will certainly clinch a nationwide smoking ban over the next 4 years.
I dunno McCain's views, so I can't really comment on that "boy."
If thangs go well over the next month with my new friend, I might end up shaking hands with Obama since he's a scheduled guest speaker at one of her business' July events. I will admit, as a smoker, I wouldn't enjoy shaking hands with him. But it would still be a lil bit cool to meet a brotha with celeb status.
Yeah, I understand this news is big news for all Americans and not just "us." It's just sad, outta respect for smokers, that I'm not in Obama's shoes cause I'd make a statement if I was the first Black president. And I'd use my love for smoking to make that "statement" towards making all smoking bans illegal.
I'd also send the indirect reminder to America that "we" smoke too, and I ain't the only "one of us" who believes in preserving . Nobody is living freely in America if the govt dictates ALL Americans' lives. I'd change that as well. And I'd make sure "we" live more freely in LEGAL fashion too. I assume people in here know what I mean by living freely legally. More folks need to live freely by living as good Americans instead, in otha words.
Monday, June 2, 2008
I'll be looking forward to getting alerts on articles dealing with people still lighting up on the beach. Cause I know it's gonna happen.
I can't imagine a beach having smoke cops 24/7. Afta I heard about the Nigerian smokers living a lot more freely than those of "us" living in the USA (afta I talked to someone new in my life over last weekend), I can only imagine how hectic it would be to stop bros/sistas from Nigeria from "breaking the no smoking rule" at a beach near me. That African govt allows people to live more freely, so they wouldn't be used to somethang as stupid as not smoking outside period.