In what was supposed to be a mild town hall meeting over the new healthcare bill that President Obama was proposing, Republican senator John Dingell met jeers and cheers.
The cheers were for those who supported his relentless work (he’s supported medical reform since he entered politics in 1955) to change the health care system.
The jeers were from those who distrusted him, the government and, more importantly, the plan that Dingell was supporting.
The most telling moment of the forum came when an older gentleman wheeled his son—who had cerebral palsy—to the front of the audience, wagged his finger at Dingell and shouted that the proposed health care plans would not cover his son’s medical expenses.
Dingell never regained control of the forum and was later, under the protection of the police, escorted out of the building.
What Started the Cerebral Palsy Uproar
The scene played out above is due to an article posted in the New York Post called Deadly Doctors about Obama’s medical advisor, Ezekiel Emmanuel.
Emmanuel was quoted as saying that doctors take the Hippocratic Oath—an oath that suggests doctors do everything in their powers to save patients—too seriously. Instead, doctors should look towards social justice and ask themselves, “Could more lives be saved if we didn’t use the resources to save this patient?”
In other words, could the money be better spent on someone else?
Of course this should horrify you…as it does most doctors. Naturally, as the NY Post piece points out, “Don’t give much care to a grandmother with Parkinson’s or a child with cerebral palsy.”
No wonder Mike Sola and anybody else caring for someone suffering from cerebral palsy would be angry about Obama’s proposed health care bill.
But is it the truth? Turns out, no, it’s not.
What Obama’s Health Care Bill Says about Cerebral Palsy
In a follow up article in by Time, Emmanuel struck back, declaring that anybody familiar with his work in the last 25 years would never come to the conclusion that he was suggesting not to give much care to a child with cerebral palsy.
In fact, according to a New York Times piece entitled Health Care Law Will Let States Tailor Benefits, while Obama’s plan covers the essential health benefits, which must be equivalent in what an employer plan covers, it goes further by demanding some benefits not typically seen on plans such as “habilitative servies” needed by those with autism or cerebral palsy.