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Christian “Scientists” Seeking Health Care Pork For Prayer

by @ 10:59 am on November 24, 2009. Filed under Health Care Reform, Politics, Religion, Science

Well, I suppose this was inevitable:

CHRISTIAN SCIENTISTS, who don’t believe in conventional medicine, are nonetheless keen to grab some of the cash the government will soon be splurging on health reform.

Church leaders want health insurers to reimburse “spiritual health” practitioners who pray for the sick, reports the Washington Post.

A proposal to that effect was stripped out of the House health bill, but the Church is lobbying to have it re-inserted into the Senate version.

Mary Baker Eddy, the founder of Christian Science, taught that sickness is a delusion. Rather than consulting a doctor when you are ill, you should pray, she advised. Her modern-day followers sometimes take this literally.

Their children occasionally die of preventable or treatable diseases. The Church would like taxpayers to subsidise this sort of nonsense. And Senators John Kerry and Orrin Hatch apparently agree.

Well, it makes about as much sense as anything else in the health care bill, so why not ?

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5 Responses to “Christian “Scientists” Seeking Health Care Pork For Prayer”

  1. Chris M. says:

    Doug, thank you for mentioning this on your blog. This is a very troubling notion and there is an excellent write up on another site I like to frequent: http://www.theness.com/neurologicablog/?p=1190

    The main point here is, if we start to pay for ONE form of nonsense, then why not reimburse ALL forms? How long will it take for every quack to consider their treatment as necessary and worthy of inclusion? Why not reimburse for silliness like magnet braclets or acupuncture? This is the most dangerous implication of federal reform of the healthcare system in my opinion. This would easily unhinge any attempt at cost savings if “alternative”, non-scientific, and unprovable modalities are allowed access as well. We’ve begun that process already with the creation of NCCAM (a good discussion can be found here: http://www.csicop.org/si/show/ongoing_problem_with_the_national_center).

    This is absolutely something to write your representatives about. Disagreements about healthcare reform itself aside, there should at least be a robust scientific standard and rejection of psuedoscience in any reform that passes.

  2. ej says:

    and this is what happens when we nationalize healthcare… all funding decisions are made by the political process… i wonder if all those pro-choice woments groups who are pushing for this bill realize it is likely going to result is more restrictions on abortions.

  3. monkeyslikebananas says:

    I hope they get it. If people have to pay they may start questioning the legitimacy of prayer. Currently people use prayer because it doesn’t cost them anything. They use both and if the medicine works they attribute the success to the prayer. If people have to choose, then medicine wins, and we wont have to worry about the morons who chose prayer for long.

  4. Let's Be Free says:

    I’ve had better luck with the copper bracelets. Even got one deducted on my FSA, believe it or not.

  5. The government interference in healthcare will not solve problems long term. Just like Social Security and Medicare this programs will suffer from not having enough financial resources, funded through tax dollars, to support the program and the inevitable cuts will come. A better solution is to allow faith-based and community-based health clinics to care for their own citizens within the community. Government grant funding could help these ministries and non-profits but these clinics are most effective when they are supported with local funds by individual contributors and local foundation grants.

    In my work with Here-4-You Christian Grant Consulting I meet ministries striving to provide healthcare services, healthcare sharing programs, free clinics, pregnancy centers, and other health related organizations. It is predicted that these programs will be harmed or even shut down by “healthcare reform.” The Christian and faith-based organizations are most concerned as to how new regulations may interfere with their missions.

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