Back with more a little later (Typepad’s been a bit problematic today) but to start, just a quick note to those who say that there’s rationing in Canada and the UK and that we’re so lucky it doesn’t happen here. You need to amend your statements to "it doesn’t happen here — to nice people like us". But if you’re poor, good luck on getting the rest of us to help out.
For those of you too lazy to clickthru, the story is about Mississippi limiting Medicaid recipients to 5 prescriptions each. Something similar was tried back in the early 1990s with anti-psychotic drugs in New Hampshire, and I seem to remember that the result was that whatever was saved on the drug side was wiped out by the consequent increase in nursing home admissions. So if this is the future (again) of rationing for the poor — and Medicaid covers 25% of the population in Mississippi — it’s not too clever a way of going about it.
(BTW This isn’t an argument in favor of Medicaid’s continued existence in its present form–it needs serious reform and in fact abolition. I’m just crying bullshit on those who say there’s no explicit rationing in the US–again).