Medical Rationing, Death Panels and the Rising Cost of Health Care: Whittier Law School Health Law Symposium Paper

12 Pages Posted: 24 Jul 2011

See all articles by Edward Larson

Edward Larson

Pepperdine University School of Law

Date Written: 2011

Abstract

This paper, prepared for the 2011 Whittier Law School Health Law Symposium, explores issues raised the partisan debate over charges that the national health-care reform legislation contained "death panels." Due to these charges, provisions were dropped from the legislation that would have expanded funding under Medicare for end of life consultation. The article argues that these these concerns were made against a backdrop of unsustainable increases in the cost of health care, particularly in the last year of life. The experience of other countries, particularly Britain, with limitations of health care spending and the impact of switching Medicare to a voucher program are also discussed. As a paper intended to introduce this topic for symposium discussion, the article concludes with a call for consideration of the medical, ethical, social, and economic issues raised by end-of-life heath care decisions.

Keywords: healthcare, health, care, health-care, reform, ration, cost, "death panel", medical, patient, Obama, Medicare, American, Democrat, Republican, Congress, "end of life", euthanasia, GDP, OEDC, insurance, drugs, NICE, "United Kingdom", "quality of life", QALY, "National Health Service", hospital

Suggested Citation

Larson, Edward J., Medical Rationing, Death Panels and the Rising Cost of Health Care: Whittier Law School Health Law Symposium Paper (2011). Whittier Law Review, Forthcoming; Pepperdine University Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2011/15. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1892170

Edward J. Larson (Contact Author)

Pepperdine University School of Law ( email )

24255 Pacific Coast Highway
Malibu, CA 90263
United States

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