After I visited patients today, I looked down at my phone and saw a notification that made my heart sink. An article from Annals of Internal Medicine cited that an additional 28,600 people would die every year if the new Senate bill passed. What?! That’s half of TCF bank stadium. Not bankrupt. Dead. Our so-called “City on a Hill” is looking more like a “Committee to kill.” When the ACA came, the GOP warned us about death panels being formed. Well guess what? They’re here, in the form of the latest bill from your Republican-led Congress.
One of the first things we learn in medicine is “primum non nocere” or “first, do no harm.” The AMA’s letter to Sen. Mitch McConnell correctly voices that sentiment, saying, “the draft legislation violates that standard on many levels.” This legislation will harm patients to the tune of 28,600 deaths a year.
The harm that this administration and Congress proposes is unconscionable. Almost half of Medicaid’s coverage is children. We as a nation shouldn’t tolerate cuts to health care coverage for kids. Such a sentence shouldn’t warrant writing.
I applaud our Minnesotan senators for their stand against this bill, but that may fall short. We may have to call upon others in different states to voice their concerns, because this will affect many. If this bill passes, there will be reconciliation between the two houses of Congress. That means Reps. Erik Paulsen, Jason Lewis and Tom Emmer will see the final draft, and they need to understand the full weight of their decisions. Please get involved with democracy. Let your elected officials know the harm they are causing before it’s too late, and before the death panels live up to their name.
MinnPost welcomes original letters from readers on current topics of general interest. Interested in joining the conversation? Submit your letter to the editor.
The choice of letters for publication is at the discretion of MinnPost editors; they will not be able to respond to individual inquiries about letters.