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The maligning of "advanced directives"


In a desperate attempt to scare the public and obstruct the health reform process, Representative Boehner said that health reform  "may start us down a treacherous path toward government-encouraged euthanasia," and former New York Lt. Gov. Betsy McCaughey said in a July 17 article: "One troubling provision of the House bill compels seniors to submit to a counseling session every five years ... about alternatives for end-of-life care." 

Hold on.  What is actually be proposed in the health reform bill would require Medicare to pay for advance directive consultations with health care professionals.  Advance directives are legal documents that lay out a patient's wishes for life-extending measures under various scenarios involving serious illness.   They provide a way for patients to communicate their wishes to family, friends and health care professionals, and to avoid confusion later on.   Furthermore, requiring Medicare to pay for the advanced directive consultations would NOT require anyone to use the benefit, it would just actually cover the health professionals time when discussing this crucial subject.

These scare tactics are insulting the intelligence of the medical community and the entire nation.

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