Sunday, July 23, 2006

No Tickee, No Chemo…

The Grand Canyon State has a nifty idea: a $1 million jackpot to one lucky voter. That’s right, “(i)f Arizona voters pass the Voter Reward Act in November... one lucky voter [will win] $1 million just for casting a ballot."

So what does that have to do with health care?

Turns out that the Sceptre'd Isle* has its own little lotto going on:

Because I was articulate and well-informed and also, I suspect, because I had connections with the Department of Health, I got the right to my treatment...

(B)rachytherapy, which carries fewer side effects than a surgical operation and is less invasive than the alternative, a radical prostatectomy” is being made available to a select few Englishmen. It’s a little complicated, but apparently the NHS (Britain’s National Health Service) will approve only a select few to receive this potentially life-saving treatment.

As one can imagine, this has resulted in quite the hew (or "hue") and cry:

Thousands of prostate cancer sufferers in Scotland are facing a "postcode lottery" over a new treatment for the disease.

The drug Zometa, has not been approved for use in Scotland, despite being available in England and other EU countries.

The lesson here is that, while a nationalized health care system may seem like a good idea, remember the old saw:

You can have it cheap, you can have it fast, you can have it good. Pick any two.

* Thanks, Matthew!
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