YOUR OPINION: Taxpayers Should Not Be Forced to Pay Thousands for Inmates With Hepatitis C
By Ilene Davis, CFP // March 14, 2018
YOUR OPINION: At what point does compassion become true stupidity?
At what point does compassion become true stupidity?
There are people in jail in Massachusetts convicted of crimes associated with using and dealing drugs.
Unfortunately, many of those embroiled in the drug culture are highly susceptible to Hepatitis C exposure and have contracted the disease, which is prevalent among the prison population primarily because it is spread through intravenous drug use.
In fact, Hepatitis C, a virus that can eventually cause cirrhosis, liver cancer, and other serious outcomes, affects some three million Americans, one-third of whom pass through U.S. prisons and jails each year.
The medication for Hepatitis C can run $30,000 to $80,000. Prisoners with Hepatitis C sued the state of Massachusetts to require that “the state” (i.e. taxpayers) provide prisoners with Hepatitis C costly medications to treat the disease.
This at a time when many law abiding citizens can’t afford insurance, much less such expensive drugs that offer a cure for a disease like Hep C.
The Massachusetts Department of Correction reached a settlement with prisoners’ rights groups over the medical treatment of prison inmates with hepatitis C, which requires prisoners with the most serious cases of hepatitis C to be treated within 12 months.
Prisoners with less serious cases will have to be treated within 18 months. Every new prisoner will be tested for hepatitis C, and those who have the disease will be treated.
The prisoners’ case was based on their assertion that “denying” them these drugs is cruel and unusual punishment. But the fact is that no one was “denying” them the drugs. They just weren’t paying for them. If the prisoner could find someone to pay for it, I’m sure the prison infirmary would see it was administered.
Something is seriously wrong with our laws if taxpayers can be forced to pay for such treatment. And what’s to prevent the big scam in which anyone infected with Hep C willing to endure a prison incarceration commits a crime to guarantee they can get treatment at taxpayers’ expense?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Ilene Davis, a resident of Brevard County since 1971, is a Certified Financial Planner with a bachelors degree in Mathematics from the University of Michigan, a bachelors degree in Accounting from Rollins College, and a Masters in Business Administration from Webster University. Davis became a stockbroker in 1982, earned her designation as a Certified Financial Planner in 1984, and with a desire to serve clients more on her own terms, opened her own financial consultant office in Cocoa Village in 1986. She has combined her professional and personal experience with keen financial insight and instinct into her first book, Wealthy By Choice: Choosing Your Way To A Wealthier Future, which was recently published by Tablet Publications of Cocoa Beach and is now available on Amazon.com, BarnesandNoble.com, TabletPublications.com and ChoosingWealth.com. She is committed to helping each client create their own “Financial Freedom Fund,” and believes strongly in free market capitalism and a “hand up rather than a hand-out” as the best path to prosperity.
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