Cindy left me a couple of comments yesterday and I thought I would bring them out onto the front page to answer.
"I'm sure you're aware of all the arguments over healthcare here in the US..Obama wanting government run & most of us not wanting it. When you mention how your husband wasn't approved for SCT, it makes me feel this way all the more..yet..it's good you can get the Velcade. Revlimid did me better than the SCT. It's so hard. My oncologist was in UK several years ago at a MM Seminar. If I recall correctly, discussion about the timeliness of getting an MRI was discussed and my doctor commented that in the US, we would not accept such a delay. The UK speaker said, "well, it's a matter of expectations then, isn't it?" He meant that we expect more. What is your thoughts of healthcare...US vs UK kind??? I do not care for Obama & this administration at all...they tell so many out & out lies that I just don't trust them. I've never seen a President LIE so boldly as Obama...and then people seem to not care or believe him!! It's scary quite honestly! Thanks for listening...;)"
Well, I have to say up front that I am very much pro-Obama. I think it is fantastic that the US finally has a representative president who is trying to do all he can to help the less-advantaged members of US society. It's p-ing off the business men whose only interest is profit - and they are no doubt behind a lot of anti-Obama propaganda. I am puzzled by the promotion of the individual which seems to dominate so much US thinking. How can anyone believe socialism is wrong? Surely government should be about equality of opportunity and assisting those who find themselves in poverty to get access to work / healthcare / food? I realise I am wading in deep political mud now! Cindy has probably stopped reading!
On the subject of healthcare, I wrote that FL is not eligible for a stem cell transplant under NHS rules. But we absolutely accept that! If we wanted to, we could pay for him to go to a private clinic and no doubt BUY a SCT, but we don't believe that is the right thing to do. If we are refused Revlimid (the next drug in the MM hierarchy) it will be because the NHS has calculated that the potential benefits to FL are too small to justify the cost to the state. A logical analysis will have been carried out by health economists to reach that decision. And we accept that. But if we didn't, we have the choice to "go private". In the States, there is NO CHOICE. If people don't have money or insurance to pay for essential medicines, they die. There is no assessment of cost / benefit / the public good. It is straightforwardly about the individual and their possession or lack of money. In the same way, even though I could probably afford it, I would not pay for my kids to go to a private school - I support the state system.
Cindy, you must think we are strange strange people. But FL and I already doubt that funding Velcade at £3000 a pop to keep one man alive for a few extra months can be justified when the same money would pay a nurse's wages for two months (per dose of Velcade!) That nurse could care for perhaps 8 people?
FL is just one man. I love him dearly and I want him to live forever. But in the end we would rather the NHS spent its money on patients who have the potential to be cured rather than prolonging the existence of a man with a terminal diagnosis, with a deteriorating quality of life. We're weird like that.
FL is slowly coming back above the water level. He hasn't had Velcade since last Thursday and yesterday was the first day he felt well enough to go outside and breathe fresh air. He ate a little bit of dinner. He slept a restful sleep in bed instead of on his chair. He smiled. He read a newspaper. He cracked a joke. He hugged me.
Really, it is all about his quality of life rather than him enduring a miserable life for longer.