Quietly tucked into Obama’s Fed-Med legislation, outlined in a Medicare regulation, the government will reimburse doctors treating seniors and others with critical medical conditions for advising patients on options for end-of-life care — including advance directives to forgo life-sustaining treatment.
“Advance care planning improves end-of-life care and patient and family satisfaction and reduces stress, anxiety and depression in surviving relatives,” the administration says in the preamble to the Medicare regulation.
And if you’re a doctor counseling your patients against life-prolonging treatment, you get your wallet fattened.
Oregon Democrat U.S. Rep Earl Blumenauer addressed the issue succinctly in an email : “While we are very happy with the result, we won’t be shouting it from the rooftops because we aren’t out of the woods yet. This regulation could be modified or reversed, especially if Republican leaders try to use this small provision to perpetuate the ‘death panel’ myth.”
According to his e-mail he asked that the proposal to be kept under wraps: “We would ask that you not broadcast this accomplishment out to any of your lists, even if they are ‘supporters’ — e-mails can too easily be forwarded.”
His intentional deception continued: “Thus far, it seems that no press or blogs have discovered it, but we will be keeping a close watch and may be calling on you if we need a rapid, targeted response. The longer this goes unnoticed, the better our chances of keeping it.”
Congressman Earl Blumenauer, the author of the original end-of-life proposal, is rated as a far-left Democrat according to GovTrack’s analysis of bill sponsorship.
The New York Times carries the full report here.
Sorry, Mr. Blumenauer, your deception has been discovered.