Saturday, September 12, 2009

Still Laughing About the Death Panels?

Many are still calling the idea that government bureaucracy would choose who lives and who dies ridiculous. I'll admit, it's a hard pill to swallow that Washington may choose not to plug in Grandma or could refuse treatment to those with disabilities. If you're still a doubter, check out this article:

Doctors left a premature baby to die because he was born two days too early, his devastated mother claimed yesterday. Sarah Capewell begged them to save her tiny son, who was born just 21 weeks and five days into her pregnancy - almost four months early.

They ignored her pleas and allegedly told her they were following national guidelines that babies born before 22 weeks should not be given medical treatment. Miss Capewell, 23, said doctors refused to even see her son Jayden, who lived for almost two hours without any medical support. She said he was breathing unaided, had a strong heartbeat and was even moving his arms and legs, but medics refused to admit him to a special care baby unit.

Miss Capewell is now fighting for a review of the medical guidelines. Medics allegedly told her that they would have tried to save the baby if he had been born two days later, at 22 weeks. In fact, the medical guidelines for Health Service hospitals state that babies should not be given intensive care if they are born at less than 23 weeks.

The guidance, drawn up by the Nuffield Council, is not compulsory but advises doctors that medical intervention for very premature children is not in the best interests of the baby, and is not 'standard practice'. James Paget Hospital in Norfolk refused to comment on the case but said it was not responsible for setting the guidelines relating to premature births.

A trust spokesman said: 'Like other acute hospitals, we follow national guidance from the British Association of Perinatal Medicine regarding premature births.' Miss Capewell, who has had five miscarriages, said the guidelines had robbed her son of a chance of life. She said: 'When he was born, he put out his arms and legs and pushed himself over.'

A midwife said he was breathing and had a strong heartbeat, and described him as a "little fighter".

I kept asking for the doctors but the midwife said, "They won't come and help, sweetie. Make the best of the time you have with him".' She cuddled her child and took precious photos of him, but he died in her arms less than two hours after his birth.

Miss Capewell, who has a five-year-old daughter Jodie, went into labour in October last year at 21 weeks and four days after suffering problems during her pregnancy. She said she was told that because she had not reached 22 weeks, she was not allowed injections to try to stop the labour, or a steroid injection to help to strengthen her baby's lungs. Instead, doctors told her to treat the labour as a miscarriage, not a birth, and to expect her baby to be born with serious deformities or even to be still-born.She told how she begged one paediatrician, 'You have got to help', only for the man to respond: 'No we don't.'

As her contractions continued, a chaplain arrived at her bedside to discuss bereavement and planning a funeral, she claims. She said: 'I was sitting there, reading this leaflet about planning a funeral and thinking, this is my baby, he isn't even born yet, let alone dead.'

After his death she even had to argue with hospital officials for her right to receive birth and death certificates, which meant she could give her son a proper funeral. She was shocked to discover that another child, born in the U.S. at 21 weeks and six days into her mother's pregnancy, had survived.

Amillia Taylor was born in Florida in 2006 and celebrated her second birthday last October. She is the youngest premature baby to survive. Miss Capewell said: 'I could not believe that one little girl, Amillia Taylor, is perfectly healthy after being born in Florida in 2006 at 21 weeks and six days. 'Thousands of women have experienced this. The doctors say the babies won't survive but how do they know if they are not giving them a chance?'

Miss Capewell has won the support of Labour MP Tony Wright, who has backed her call for a review of the medical guidelines. He said: 'When a woman wants to give the best chance to her baby, they should surely be afforded that opportunity.' What the medical guidelines say...Guidance limiting care of the most premature babies provoked outrage when it was published three years ago.

Experts on medical ethics advised doctors not to resuscitate babies born before 23 weeks in the womb, stating that it was not in the child's 'best interests'. The guidelines said: 'If gestational age is certain and less than 23+0 (i.e at 22 weeks) it would be considered in the best interests of the baby, and standard practice, for resuscitation not to be carried out.'

Medical intervention would be given for a child born between 22 and 23 weeks only if the parents requested it and only after discussion about likely outcomes. The rules were endorsed by the British Association of Perinatal Medicine and are followed by NHS hospitals.

The association said they were not meant to be a 'set of instructions', but doctors regard them as the best available advice on the treatment of premature babies. More than 80,000 babies are born prematurely in Britain every year, and of those some 40,000 need to be treated in intensive care. The NHS spends an estimated £1 billion a year on their care.

But while survival rates for those born after 24 weeks in the womb have risen significantly, the rates for those born earlier have barely changed, despite advances in medicine and technology.
Medical experts say babies born before 23 weeks are simply too under-developed to survive, and that to use aggressive treatment methods would only prolong their suffering, or inflict pain.

The guidelines were drawn up by the Nuffield Council on Bioethics after a two-year inquiry which took evidence from doctors, nurses and religious leaders.

But weeks before they were published in 2006, a child was born in the U.S. which proved a baby could survive at earlier than 22 weeks if it was given medical treatment. Amillia Taylor was born in Florida on October 24, 2006, after just 21 weeks and six days in the womb. She celebrated her second birthday last year. Doctors believed she was a week older and so gave her intensive care, but later admitted she would not have received treatment if they had known her true age. Her birth also coincided with the debate in Britain over whether the abortion limit should be reduced.

Some argued that if a baby could survive at 22 weeks then the time limit on abortions should be reduced. The argument, which was lost in Parliament, followed a cut to the time limit in 1990 when politicians reduced it from 28 weeks to 24 weeks, in line with scientific evidence that foetuses could survive outside the womb at a younger age.

However, experts say cases like Amillia Taylor's are rare, and can raise false expectations about survival rates. Studies show that only 1 per cent of babies born before 23 weeks survive, and many suffer serious disabilities.

Do you have words? I don't.

Rest in peace, Jayden Capewell. Your death will not be in vain.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Where Have I Heard This BS Before?

The Attention-Monger in Chief went on television last night to completely bore the majority of the American populace with his long-winded, double-tongued sales pitch to the cheers of little Congressional monkeys who couldn't get enough of the peanuts. I tried to watch it; I really did. I think I forced myself to stay on the channel for about 10 seconds. That is seriously all I can take of the complete BS that comes out of that man's mouth.

This is a guy who I would swear is having a love affair with his teleprompter. He can't get enough of that thing.

(calming down now)

Here's the gist of what I got: "We're in dire straits. We must pass this now, or the world will end."

The rhetoric sounded vaguely familiar. Where have we heard this before?

Oh, yeah, the stimulus package. You know, that thing that had to be passed right away; we couldn't wait a couple weeks to make sure we actually knew what we were doing. "Must be done now or over 300 million Americans will lose their jobs!"

And they accuse Sarah Palin of fear-mongering.

Speaking of which, I seem to recall that a certain Alaskan Governor urged the President to veto that stimulus so that we could make sure we did it right. Did he listen? No. There went nearly a trillion dollars down the drain. It did zilch; nothing. Well, other than pay off a lot of Obama's best buds, but let's not get into that.

I'm sorry, but I have to disagree with the idea that because we have a problem (and we do have some) we have to rush into the solution without giving it enough consideration to make sure that we won't make the problem worse.

I don't really want to get into the death panel rationing thing, but I've heard some of the arguments from the left. They say, "Well, so what if there might be some rationing? There's rationing already. People can't afford it now."

Okay, let me get this straight; you're saying that creating a big problem is okay because we already have that problem on a smaller scale?


In other words, you want to take the same problems we've got now, make them a hundred times bigger and spread them out so that everybody shares equally in the problems and that is going to solve our problems?

I'm going back to bed. Maybe I'll wake up in a world with some sane people in it.

The biggest problem Obama has right now is that the American people don't believe him. They would like to believe that free lollipops will rain down on their heads, but it's kinda hard to swallow. And the reason he's receiving such harsh pushback on this is because we've been sold down the river a couple of times now by this rhetoric that ends with our pouring billions of dollars down a sewer grate never to be seen again. We've been screwed before, and this is sounding a lot like those other times.

Also, this isn't just money we're talking about, it's people's lives. Don't you think it's worth the extra time and effort to make sure we have something that will actually work when such important things are at stake?

Mr. President, if you would like us to trust you with revamping the health care system, how about you do a couple other things first:

1. Fix Medicare.
2. Fix the VA.

Once you have proven to the American people that you guys up there in Washington can handle the power and the money we've already given you, we'll consider doling out more. Until then, shut up and let us lead our lives in peace.

Oh, and if you would be so kind, how about passing simple bills that focus on just one thing, like TORT reform? Maybe that would be a good idea. But what would I know? I'm just an ignorant plebe. Not at all like the brilliant people in Washington who are offering to come save us from the mess they helped create in the first place.

Monday, September 7, 2009

How Dare They - UPDATED

[UPDATE: I wrote this piece months ago in a hurry. For some reason I was going through my featured posts and decided that I needed to clarify something. The clarification is in red below.]

I am sick to death of these Levi Johnston stories where the author starts out, "Levi gets back at the Palins after they dragged him into the media spotlight."

Excuse me, what?

I'm sorry. I didn't know that taking your daughter's fiance in and treating him like your own son was a crime to be repaid by betrayal for 15 minutes of fame and thirty pieces of silver.

I join the media in saying, "How dare the Palins!" How dare they:

1. Not take the guy who knocked up their daughter into the backyard and beat him up. (I'm not saying he should be beaten up, it's hyperbole. How much would you love the teenage punk who knocked up your daughter? Oh, you might come to accept him as part of your family in time because you have to, but in the beginning, there's definitely anger.)

2. Take the delinquent in and treat him like their own kid and help him out all they can.

3. Offer to love and support him even after he makes a complete idiot out of himself on Tyra Banks.

4. Show amazing grace and restraint to never bring up Levi's own family problems or rub it in his face that he's a high school drop-out who got their teenage daughter pregnant and now runs around Hollywood making an a** out of himself without paying any kind of child support.

Yes, how dare the Palins be decent human beings.


Could it be a...............NEWSPAPER?!