Right-wing columnist says Obamacare will spawn government snooping into your sex life
In a column for the New York Post, Betsy McCaughey, an inveterate and hysterical critic of Obamacare, ENVISIONS this unsettling scenario:
“Are you sexually active? If so, with one partner, multiple partners or same-sex partners?”
Be ready to answer those questions and more the next time you go to the doctor, whether it’s the dermatologist or the cardiologist and no matter if the questions are unrelated to why you’re seeking medical help. And you can thank the Obama health law…
The president’s “reforms” aim to turn doctors into government agents, pressuring them financially to ask questions they consider inappropriate and unnecessary, and to violate their Hippocratic Oath to keep patients’ records confidential.
Embarrassing though it may be, you confide things to a doctor you wouldn’t tell anyone else. But this is entirely different.
Doctors and hospitals who don’t comply with the federal government’s electronic-health-records requirements forgo incentive payments now; starting in 2015, they’ll face financial penalties from Medicare and Medicaid. The Department of Health and Human Services has already paid out over $12.7 billion for these incentives.
But, of course, McCaughey’s argument — like so many other nutcase arguments against Obamacare — is pure rubbish.
HERE‘s what PolitFact say about the matter:
McCaughey’s claim was utterly at odds with the evidence.
“Arrgghhh — now I have heard it all!” said Molly Cooke, president of the American College of Physicians.
Cooke, an internist, told PolitiFact that when she was in medical school in the 1970s, she was taught to ask:
• Are you sexually active (with other people)?
• If yes, are your partners men, women or both?
• If no, is that out of choice, because you don’t currently have an appealing partner, because you have no privacy, or some other reason?
• Are you happy with your sex life, however it is?
“My classmates and I were taught to ask all patients all four questions,” she said. “I am not saying that we always did it, but these questions are as old as the hills.”
The rationale is that patients’ answers may reveal important information about their health, safety and well-being, she said. Her medical practice happens to focus on patients with HIV and other complex chronic illnesses.
But let’s say some doctors, such as the cardiologist quoted by McCaughey, find such questions “insensitive, stupid and very intrusive.”
McCaughey wrote that the president’s “reforms” aim to “turn doctors into government agents, pressuring them financially to ask questions they consider inappropriate and unnecessary.”
Yet that cardiologist could earn government incentives for meaningful use of electronic health records whether he asked “sex questions” or not…
McCaughey frames her concern for patient privacy with an evidence-free attack on Obamacare that veers toward the ridiculous. We call it Pants on Fire.