Readers are most likely familiar with Rahm Emanuel, President Obama’s chief of staff (he of the Chicago Way). Some of you may also know that Mr. Emanuel’s brother, Ari, is reportedly the basis for the character Ari Gold from the T.V. series Entourage.
It turns out there is also a third brother, Ezekiel Emanuel. He is to all appearances a bit more low key than the other two. Having obtained an MD and PhD in political philosophy and a degree in chemistry from Oxford, Mr. Emanuel spends his time penning books and articles opposing assisted suicide and explaining how to use vouchers to achieve universal health care.
Oh, and he’s also just been appointed an advisor to President Obama on health care policy. The whole thing is like something out of a Wes Anderson movie, absent the dysfunction.
After weeks of bad news, things turned Barbara Wagner’s way this week.
Last month her lung cancer, in remission for about two years, was back. After her oncologist prescribed a cancer drug that could slow the cancer growth and extend her life, Wagner was notified that the Oregon Health Plan wouldn’t cover it.
It would cover comfort and care, including, if she chose, doctor-assisted suicide.
Then on Monday a representative of the pharmaceutical company Genentech called Wagner and offered the medicine for free.
Wagner said she didn’t know whether to laugh or cry, so she did both.
Treatment of advanced cancer meant to prolong life, or change the course of this disease, is not covered by the Oregon Health Plan, said the unsigned letter Wagner received from LIPA, the Eugene company that administers the plan in Lane County. Continue reading
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