Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Donald Berwick - #1922 - Video: Obama Gives Recess Appointment to Donald Berwick, New Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services - Hot Air


Obama gives recess appointment to Donald Berwick, New Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services - Hot Air - Just how controversial was Barack Obama’s appointment of Donald Berwick to head the Centers for Medicare and  Medicaid Services (CMS)? Even with an 18-seat majority in the Senate, Obama shrank from having Berwick even show up at a hearing. Instead, Obama will use a recess appointment to get Berwick a pass from Congressional oversight:  With Congress officially on recess, President Obama will on Wednesday use his ability to make recess appointments to name one of his more controversial nominees: Donald Berwick, nominee to be Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and  Medicaid Services (CMS).  The April nomination of Berwick — president and chief executive officer of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement — was in trouble and might not have been able to meet Senate confirmation due to comments Berwick made in the past about rationing health care. Even if Berwick could have been confirmed by the Senate, Democrats have little appetite for another round of fighting about changes to the health care system, Democrats said.

At this point in his presidency, Jake Tapper points out, George W. Bush had made 15 recess appointments. Democrats claimed that Bush was so abusive of the privilege that they started keeping the Senate in session continuously after taking control of the chamber in January 2007 to block any more recess appointments. How many recess appointments has Obama made? Eighteen.  Ben Domenech gives us an insight into why Obama feared Berwick’s appearance at a Senate confirmation hearing:........No one “stalled” Berwick. The truth is that Obama was afraid to have Berwick questioned by Congress, which should have everyone questioning his suitability for the position, even without considering his prior statements on wealth redistribution and slobbering fanboyism of the British state-run health service. Read more.........

Rationer-in-Chief - Heritage Foundation - When Linda O’Boyle was diagnosed with bowel cancer, her doctors told her she could boost her chances of survival by adding the drug cetuximab to her regimen. But the rationing body for Britain’s National Health Service, the National Institute of Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE), had previously ruled that the drug was not cost-effective and therefore would not be paid for by the government. So O’Boyle liquidated her savings and paid for the drug herself. But this is not allowed under NHS rules. When government bureaucrats found out that O’Boyle had purchased the drug with her own money, she was denied NHS treatment and died within months........ Dr. Berwick said of Britain’s health care system: “Cynics beware, I am romantic about the National Health Service; I love it.” And his love for Britain’s health care system is not in spite of its rationing, but because of it. In 2009 Dr. Berwick told Biotechnology Healthcare: “NICE is extremely effective and a conscientious and valuable knowledge-building system. … The decision is not whether or not we will ration care – the decision is whether we will ration with our eyes open.” Read more......

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