Do Death Panels Already Deny Americans Medical Treatment?

12/29/10 Robert Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Wednesday) | Listen to this entire show:

Good afternoon, welcome to Radioactivity. I’m Rob Lorei.

A young mother dies in north Florida- waiting for a private insurance company to approve her liver transplant. The approval never came- leaving behind a family including a ten year old son. Is this an example of a death panel? We’ll talk about it in a few minutes.

But first some listener comments about yesterday’s program. Here’s what some listeners had to say on the topics of donations to WMNF, program changes, and yesterday’s guest- reporter Max Blumenthal who has written about a new network that he says is spreading unnecessary fear of the Muslim religion.

Do death panels exist? The term is frequently used by opponents of the health care reform law passed by Congress earlier this year. The term is still used by some media out lets regarding what might happen under health care reform. We played a segment from FOX News from earlier this week. It was a debate about what might happen.

But do death panels already exist? Our guest today says yes they do. A few weeks ago a 37 year old women in Jacksonville named Alisa Wilson died after her family repeatedly asked her private HMO to okay a liver transplant. Wilson was on Medicaid, but her health insurance was being provided by a private, for-profit company- it's an experimental program begun by former Governor Jeb Bush. The experiment is designed to save tax dollars. For more than six weeks Wilson was confined to a bed in St. Vincent’s Medical Center – much of the time on a ventilator and getting dialysis. While her family fought with the private insurance company the insurance company put up roadblocks to the transplant. Here to talk about the case is an attorney from Clearwater, David Lillesand who was assisting Alisa Wilson’s family in trying to get approval for the transplant.


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