August 12, 2008There are trade-offs every where, we all know, including for health care. How much do you spend to provide how much treatment to which payments? These decisions often are not easy. But at least in a decentralized, private system lots of people are making those decisions. Nationalized systems centralize the decisions over life and death, and hand them to politicians and bureaucrats.
The National Health System in Great Britain is refreshingly honest. If we don't think it's worth the money to save your life, tough. It's the public interest, you know!
Reports the Independent:
Patients cannot rely on the NHS to save their lives if the cost of doing so is too great, the Government's medicines...
August 8, 2008There are drugs to treat the disease, and they are available in America. But the National Health Service won't pay for them. Writes Jonathan Waxman in the Times of London:
But there are areas of healthcare where things have gone badly wrong, where wrong meets bad, becomes worse, and then spirals to appalling, and these areas are approached through the bloodstained portals of the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE).
This week's NICE announcement on treating kidney cancer, a preliminary opinion about the value of new drugs, has sent doctors into apoplexy. Kidney cancer affects approximately 7,500 people in the UK each year, and there are 2,500 deaths. We have recently begun to understand the molecular biology of kidney cancer, and to know...
August 8, 2008Maybe so. At least, that's what Alice Thomson argues in the Times of London:
Julie Burchill can't stand them. According to her new book, Not in my Name: A Compendium of Modern Hypocrisy, she thinks all environmentalists are po-faced, unsexy, public school alumni who drivel on about the end of the world because they don't want the working classes to have any fun, go on foreign holidays or buy cheap clothes.
Michael O'Leary, the chief executive of Ryanair, agrees. In an interview with Rachel Sylvester and me, he told us that the “nutbag ecologists” are the overindulged rich who have nothing better to do with their lives than talk about hot air and beans.
So the salad days are over; it's the end of the greens. Where only a year ago the smart new eco-warriors were...
August 5, 2008Explains Peter Pitts of the Center for Medicine in the Public Interest:
Experimental cures are often the last hope for dying patients in the U. K. health system. Thanks to the British government, however, many sick Britons will soon have their last hopes dashed.
Why? Pharmaceutical companies from around the world have been scaling back clinical research in the United Kingdom, largely because of government parsimony. And British citizens have paid the price.
Britain's National Health Service seems to have made Britain inhospitable to new drug research. By covering only the lowest-cost treatment options and denying patients access to more expensive breakthrough drugs, the NHS has erected serious roadblocks for companies trying to develop new cures.
The main culprit is Britain's National Institute for Health and...
August 2, 2008It's terrible. The Europeans, who routinely claim to be morally superior to the greedy American species, are now yelping about the cost of climate change legislation. The Germans, in this case, actually want to sacrifice the planet's future for their own selfish purposes. Explains Deutsche Welle:
At a meeting of government and industry officials on Tuesday, July 15, Germany's Deputy Economics Minister Jochen Homann and all other speakers said that the EU plan was not business-friendly.
"The conclusion of the conference is that there is only limited scope for reducing "emissions" in the industrial sector and the EU climate package needs improvement in key...
August 1, 2008One reason trade is said to be a bad thing is because jobs are "outsourced" overseas. Never mind that more new jobs have been created than lost in recent decades. The visible effects create political lobbies. The largely invisible results of free trade are usually ignored.
Now, however, we see "insourcing." Reports ABC News:
But some experts say there is a bright spot on the jobs front: At least a handful of American companies who had relied on workers stationed overseas are now bringing jobs back to the United States. In addition, foreign companies are continuing to expand U.S. operations and hiring more local residents, instead of flying in foreign staff for business.
It's called "insourcing" or "reverse outsourcing." It's the opposite of outsourcing, the oft-criticized practice of...
July 30, 2008This can't be. There apparently are PHYSICISTS who don't believe the world is about to end due to climate change. They even disagree with the UN's IPCC. My god! What further horrors await all true believers in the Goracle's pronouncements??
Observes Jeffrey Marque, the editor of the Forum on Physics & Society:
July 30, 2008I love California, but the fruits and nuts truly have taken control. The city of Los Angeles has initiated a moratorium on fast food restaurants--but only in poor neighborhoods--to iimprove the people's health. Reports the Associated Press:
City officials are putting South Los Angeles on a diet.
The City Council voted unanimously Tuesday to place a moratorium on new fast food restaurants in an impoverished swath of the city with a proliferation of such eateries and above average rates of obesity.
The yearlong moratorium is intended to give the city time to attract restaurants that serve healthier food. The action, which the mayor must still sign into law, is believed to be the first of its kind by a major city to protect public health.
In the city...
July 28, 2008Remember stories about the horrors of the American medical system? Operations performed on the wrong leg and such? Guess what: it's also a problem in Great Britain, with its wonderful, equal, fair National Health Service. Reports the Independent:
The cases of 14 brain surgery patients who were the victims of catastrophic errors when neurosurgeons operated on the wrong side of the head are to spearhead a government drive to make operations safer.
Sir Liam Donaldson, the Government's chief medical officer, will highlight the cases at the launch of his annual report today when he will announce the establishment of a new clinical board for surgical safety to reduce errors and...
July 26, 2008The Law of the Sea Treaty just won't go away. Ronald Reagan attempted to kill it a quarter century ago. But it's still with us. In the Washington Times I warn the Senate to look carefully before leaping into the bureaucratic monstrosity.