And now it starts.
I'm not one to get political on here but something has REALLY REALLY been bugging me and I have to get it off my chest. It has to do with healthcare bill. And before someone goes and thinks...well she has health insurance, she has the luxury of having this opinion. While I have insurance, my 4 oldest kids at the present time have NO insurance at all. I'm dealing with some decent size bills from tests we felt were necessary for Val. I live in fear that one of my kids is going to be sick and not get treatment because they can't afford it. I'm looking at Carrie's future knowing that with the way things are right now there's a very good possibility that she could be denied insurance coverage as an adult due to existing medical conditions. Meaning if her coverage ever lapses then no one has to insure her again, almost forcing her to attend college. Or possibly forcing her to take a job or not based solely on whether she can have medical coverage. It sucks!
My problem is that one of my fears has already started to surface. The government gets it's claws into the system and things start becoming unnecessary or elective or whatnot. With the healthcare bill being the closest it's ever been to being passed there suddenly is all these revisions on medical procedures coming out. Namely the US Preventative Services Task Force's new Mammogram recommendations. Funny how for 20yrs we were pushed and pushed to get our mammograms. Now that the government might be paying for most of them...oh it's not really necessary right now. It'll just freak you out and cause you stress because it might give false positive results. Sorry Charlie but I'd rather be freaked out for a little bit for good news then to stick my head in the sand because a government panel thinks it's unnecessary. Thus allowing cancer to grow longer then is necessary. Like until I can actually feel it myself. And that brings us to the other thing....
What really got me was that they were also suggesting that doctor's stop teaching women how to do breast self-examinations because it serves little benefit. HUH!?!?! Do they not realize how many women received EARLY treatment for breast cancer because they felt a lump. Do they realize it's the least invasive screening procedure out there for breast cancer. Do they realize that it doesn't cost a stinking penny to utilize!? Quite a few women I know who've been treated for breast cancer already suspected or knew they had it due to feeling lumps. Most of them under the age of 40 BTW. Yes, many women get scared because they feel a lump that most likely is a blocked milk duct or a benign cyst but still...how can they say that it serves little benefit!?!?
For all I know, the task force could have tons of scientific data to back up it's stance for reduced use of mammograms. Looking up articles just now while writing this I see that many people are doubting the validity of the studies. Accusations of poor exacution and financing of the study. That technology involved with mammograms and followup procedures is greatly increased since the study started (the 70's). I'm sure I can find info out there to back up both parties, it's usually the case.
The timing just makes me go hmmmm. And to me it seems wrong to have those that will probably be paying for things to be making the recommendations and rules about the services it's paying for. And onto the slippery slope we go.
Oh and a question to the task force. What percentage level does make it worth recommending? Because a 14 percent reduction in breast cancer related deaths due to screening in the 40yo group seems pretty significant to me. Just wondering.