Can everything be looked at as a commercial decision?
How do you equate a life to numbers? Have more kids if you can afford it. “Afford” in what sense? Only financially? Well obviously, that’s not working. As those who can afford it are looking at it in terms of time. Quality of life. Losing out at work. Not being able to run for promotions….etc.. In spite of the incentives, there are voices and rumblings asking for more.. What’s in it for me? Isn’t that what we are trying to avoid? Looking at giving life from a commerical perspective. It should be a national service, besides doing it for love, for the intangible gain.
Is it the same side of the coin and shouldn’t the same principle apply, when we hear thoughts such as “healthcare needs to be commercially managed” being espoused. There’s nothing wrong with healthy competition for products and services; Like servicing a car. But healthcare is about servicing a life. And the scary carry-through of that kind of thinking is “I fight for business that brings me the best ROI”.
I am a slow thinker. But what is slowly forming in my mind, is that it could ultimately mean, what ROI returns can you get from the poor?
Will it ever get down to “consult doctors if you can afford it?”. If not, do think about dying gracefully and graciously. Please don’t make it difficult because you need to understand that healthcare cost is so high. What quality of life would there be as a vegetable anyway?
When you are younger, the sense of mortality or sickness or affordability doesn’t quite hit you. So when my uncle once told me, it’s best that you die, when you are old and sick and poor. I didn’t quite get it at that time. But I am beginning to see where that thinking is coming from.
His was a hard life. And saying more would be desecrating his memory. But having done what he could within his ability and means to raise a family, he was pretty much left dependent when he was older. It is not easy to live and wait for handouts… even if your children do it, not only out of a sense of obligation but out of love. So when he was sick, he was open to being “taken home”, when it was time.
What he is feeling might be magnified by time I get to that age. And my CPF and savings dry up. My healthcare insurance is depleted.
Then maybe I should die? Which is in itself flawed, if we considered religion at all and that there is Someone bigger than ourselves. Life is not in our hands. It is God’s to give and to take away. So do we play God when we start thinking:
– I am sick, time to die
– I am sick. Can I afford the sub specialists’ treatments? Stop treatment. Time to die
– I am sick. My children can’t afford to take care of me with their own burdens. They need to take care of their young. Don’t seek medical treatment. Time to die
– I am sick. Society does not now cater to the old and infirmed. It is commercially reasonable. Time to die
– I am sick. Stand in queue for social welfare. What?… you have an HDB flat over your head? You should be able to afford healthcare. But you can’t. Time to die
– I am sick. I never listened and never got married. No kids to support me in my old age. Time to die
Thankfully, in my perception of a future that could be merciless (especially to the old and old and infirmed), I have a merciful God. I have seen His hand at work with many of His people. When time came, either money drying up, or families have reconciled, or whatever lessons have been learnt (by the sick and healthy), he took His people home. OR, He miraculously healed those on the brink of death. It is true. There are limitations to modern medicine.
Even if you can afford it, I wonder if it will come to a point where the decision then would be, which patient, if healed, could contribute more to society. That’s scary, isn’t it?
So then it could still be encouraged that the old and rich, choose to die too and this type of thinking could be the norm:
– I am sick. I can afford it. But medical science has its limitations. Time to die
Or a fad:
– I am sick. I can afford it. But I will enjoy the remainder of my shortened life and take the “Tourist Suicide” route
I know there is a God who is sovereign over all things. But my life now is on this earth. To see the possibility of a callous world turning its back on those who have contributed to our own growth and who now need us, is all very disconcerting.
I know some sensible decisions have to be made about the rising cost of healthcare. And yes, I agree preventive measures should also be a personal discipline and responsibility; but I pray we do not go down that route, where we eschew our old because they are no longer useful. 😮
One last thought, for now… I wonder if proponents of this type of thinking, apply the same principles to themselves? Will they choose to die, when their time comes, knowing their own sense of mortality? Will they apply this to their loved ones? Will it be so cut and dry as to whom to save and who to let die?
Or are some people more equal than others?…..