Healthcare Bill Tweets - Fact Check



There is a twitter list being passed around about the healthcare bill. Are you wondering if these tweets are true or not?

Analysis by Fox News Channel Brain Room

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THE TWEET: Pg 22 of the HC Bill MANDATES the Govt will audit books of ALL EMPLOYERS that self insure!! WTF!!

MOSTLY TRUE

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THE BILL: Study of differences between insured and self-insured plans in the bill. Page 22, Lines 9-11.

Sec. 113 sets up a study, not necessarily a recurring audit.  Although the section doesn’t give much detail about what information will be required from companies to determine their financial solvency or capital reserve ratio, the information might already be available to the IRS and SEC.

SEC. 113. INSURANCE RATING RULES

(b) STUDY AND REPORTS.—

(1) STUDY.—The Commissioner, in coordination with the Secretary of Health and Human Services and the Secretary of Labor, shall conduct a study of the large group insured and self-insured employer health care markets. Such study shall examine the following:

(C) The financial solvency and capital reserve levels of employers that self-insure by employer size.

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THE TWEET: PG 24 Sec 116 of HC bill Govt effectively sets prices for ALL private health plans. WTF!!!!

HALF TRUE

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THE BILL: As the Committee’s summary states, Sec. 116 - Ensuring value and lower premiums, requires qualified plans to meet a specified medical loss ratio as defined by the Health Choices Commissioner. If plans exceed that limit, rebates to enrollees are required.

The section isn’t precisely about setting prices, but the high required loss ratio could limit how much participating private plans could charge.  The loss ratio is the amount of each premium dollar that is spent on actual medical care costs.

What this means is that the bill sets a percentage of premium dollars that must be spent on medical costs; it limits the percentage that can go to administrative costs and profit. The bill would provide that the medical loss ratio must be at least 85 percent.

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THE TWEET: Pg 29 lines 4-16 in the HC bill – YOUR HEALTHCARE IS RATIONED!!!

FALSE

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THE BILL: SEC. 122. ESSENTIAL BENEFITS PACKAGE DEFINED.

(c) REQUIREMENTS RELATING TO COST-SHARING AND MINIMUM ACTUARIAL VALUE.—

(2) ANNUAL LIMITATION.—

(A) ANNUAL LIMITATION.—The cost-sharing incurred under the essential benefits package with respect to an individual (or family) for a year does not exceed the applicable level specified in subparagraph (B).

(B) APPLICABLE LEVEL.—The applicable level specified in this subparagraph for Y1 is $5,000 for an individual and $10,000 for a family. Such levels shall be increased (rounded to the nearest $100) for each subsequent year by the annual percentage increase in the Consumer Price Index (United States city average) applicable to such year.

The above lines are line 4-16 of page 29.  They don’t pertain to any rationing.  This paragraph limits annual out-of-pocket spending in the essential benefits package, that all plans must meet, to $5,000 for an individual and $10,000 (indexed to CPI) for a family.  Out-of-pocket maximums are already common in health insurance plans.

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THE TWEET: Pg 30 Sec 123 of HC bill – THERE WILL BE A GOVT COMMITTEE that decides what treatments/benes u get.

MOSTLY FALSE

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THE BILL: SEC. 123. HEALTH BENEFITS ADVISORY COMMITTEE.

Sec. 123 establishes a Health Benefits Advisory Committee, chaired by the Surgeon General. The Health Benefits Advisory Committee is a government committee – it is a committee formed by the government – but most of its members would not be Federal employees or officers.  The President would appoint most of its members; the Comptroller General of the U.S. would appoint a number of them as well.  The membership is supposed to reflect a wide variety of interests, “a balance among various sectors of the health care system” as the bill details.

The Health Benefits Advisory Committee shall recommend to the Secretary of Health and Human Services benefit standards.  The benefits standards do include categories of covered treatments, items and services within benefit classes, and cost-sharing.  Such standards, if adopted, would decide a minimum level of benefits an individual would get, depending on what plan option they choose. 

However, recommending such standards and “deciding” such standards isn’t exactly the same thing. The Secretary of HHS, as detailed in Sec. 124, shall review the standards recommended by the Committee and shall determine whether to propose adoption of such standards as a package.  If the Secretary doesn’t like the standards as a package the Committee will get a chance to modify their recommendation.  In the end, if the deadline for recommending the standards is looming, the Secretary shall propose adoption of initial benefit standards.

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THE TWEET: Pg 37 Sec 132 of HC Bill – The Govt will be reviewing grievances about

themselves and will decide on appeals for rejected claims.

FALSE

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THE BILL: SEC. 132. REQUIRING FAIR GRIEVANCE AND APPEALS MECHANISMS.

As the Committee’s summary states, the bill requires each qualified plan to meet standards defined by the Health Choices Commissioner for timely internal grievance and appeals mechanisms and to establish an external review process that provides for an impartial, independent and de novo review of denied claims. The determination is binding.

The internal review requirements don’t appear to be anything all that new; they’re the same as the requirements under Title I of ERISA.  If the government is the provider, as it would be with a public option, the government, HHS, would apparently handle the internal appeals process. 

However, the public health insurance option would apparently be subject to the external review process, established by the Commissioner, that provides for an impartial, independent, and de novo review of denied claims under this division.  The bill doesn’t indicate that the government will be the party conducting the independent external reviews.

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THE TWEET: Pg 42 of HC Bill – The Health Choices Commissioner will choose UR HC Benefits 4 you. U have no choice!

FALSE

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THE BILL: SEC. 142. DUTIES AND AUTHORITY OF COMMISSIONER.

The Commissioner establishes plan standards, works out the operation of the Exchange, and administers affordability credits.  He doesn’t choose what plan an individual must choose and therefore what benefits an individual will have.  As with many parts of this bill, the standards concern what must be offered at a minimum.

The Commissioner will hold health benefit plans accountable for meeting federal requirements.  Plans that don’t meet federal requirements could be penalized, suspended, or terminated.

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THE TWEET: PG 50 Section 152 in HC bill – HC will be provided 2 ALL non US citizens, illegal or otherwise.

HALF TRUE

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THE BILL: SEC. 152. PROHIBITING DISCRIMINATION IN HEALTH CARE.

(a) IN GENERAL.—Except as otherwise explicitly permitted by this Act and by subsequent regulations consistent with this Act, all health care and related services (including insurance coverage and public health activities) covered by this Act shall be provided without regard to personal characteristics extraneous to the provision of high quality health care or related services.

The bill doesn’t explicitly allow services to illegal immigrants and this section isn’t, on its face, intended to extend coverage to illegal immigrants. But critics say the bill needs a specific exemption to bar immigrants from receiving health care through emergency rooms and community health centers. Some critics say budget estimates for the health bill already factor in illegal immigrants receiving taxpayer-funded insurance due to the health bill not requiring verification of citizenship for people receiving services.

In Sec. 246 the bill specifically states “Nothing in this subtitle shall allow Federal payments for affordability credits on behalf of individuals who are not lawfully present in the United States.”  Groups opposed to illegal immigration have argued that the bill doesn’t do what is necessary to be sure that prohibition is actually enforced.

This civil rights provision, Sec. 152, would most likely protect individuals from discrimination on the basis of age, race, national origin, etc.  It will arguably also offer protection to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals.

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THE TWEET: Pg 58HC Bill – Govt will have real-time access 2 individs finances & a National ID Healthcard will b issued!

FALSE

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THE BILL: SEC. 163. ADMINISTRATIVE SIMPLIFICATION.

(a) STANDARDIZING ELECTRONIC ADMINISTRATIVE TRANSACTIONS.—

‘‘(2) GOALS FOR FINANCIAL AND ADMINISTRATIVE TRANSACTIONS.—The goals for standards under paragraph (1) are that such standards shall—

‘‘(D) enable the real-time (or near real-time) determination of an individual’s financial responsibility at the point of service and, to the extent possible, prior to service, including whether the individual is eligible for a specific service with a specific physician at a specific facility, which may include utilization of a machine-readable health plan beneficiary identification card;

Hardly.  This bit of Sec. 163 is meant to require a quick determination of how much an individual owes for a visit to a provider: they want you to be able to find out how much your bill will be without waiting too long. 

The machine-readable health plan beneficiary identification card that may be utilized would be a card that they don’t have to type the number in, but rather includes possibly a magnetic strip or machine-readable code.  No other standards for such a card are indicated, nor is any indication given that such cards will be issued by parties other than the plan provider.

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THE TWEET: Pg 59 HC Bill lines 21-24 Govt will have direct access 2 ur banks accts 4 elect. funds transfer!

HALF TRUE

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THE BILL: SEC. 163. ADMINISTRATIVE SIMPLIFICATION.

‘‘(4) REQUIREMENTS FOR SPECIFIC STANDARDS.—The standards under this section shall be developed, adopted and enforced so as to—

‘‘(C) enable electronic funds transfers, in order to allow automated reconciliation with the related health care payment and remittance advice;

Sec. 163 sets a standard where electronic funds transfers (EFTs) must be enabled, but this paragraph doesn’t require EFTs to be used.  It’s an efficiency measure, or as the bill section says an “administrative simplification”, but apparently not a mandatory one.  If an individual did use the public option then the government could have some access to their bank accounts during the course of an EFT, but the doctor’s office or other point of service would most likely be the ones processing any payments from patients.

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THE TWEET: Pg 61 HC Bill lines 22-24 Congress has no clue what Elec. Med Records will cost. Asks for estimate.

TRUE

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THE BILL: SEC. 163. ADMINISTRATIVE SIMPLIFICATION.

‘‘(6) IMPLEMENTATION AND ENFORCEMENT.— Not later than 6 months after the date of the enactment of this section, the Secretary shall submit to the appropriate committees of Congress a plan for the implementation and enforcement, by not later than 5 years after such date of enactment, of the standards under this section. Such plan shall include—

‘‘(E) an estimate of total funds needed to ensure timely completion of the implementation plan; and

Yes, the bill requires the Secretary to submit to the appropriate committees of Congress an estimate for how much money he or she will need to implement and enforce their administrative simplification plan.

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THE TWEET: PG 65 Sec 164 is a payoff subsidized plan 4 retirees and their families in Unions & community orgs (ACORN).

MOSTLY TRUE

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THE BILL: This is correct (although probably would not apply to ACORN). 

It establishes a government-run "temporary" reinsurance fund with $10 billion of tax-payer funds.  The government can use these funds to pay claims of retirees in employer-sponsored health care programs or VEBA Trusts, with the purpose of the reinsurance being to ensure that these retirees do not have higher out of pocket costs. 

        The most relevant angle on this might be the UAW VEBA.  The government already used taxpayer dollars to give the car companies to the UAW.  The UAW and the Democrats made a big deal out of the "sacrifice" by the UAW because the UAW VEBA was taking a risk that the company stock it received as a "concession" to assist the car makers might not be enough to cover the VEBA costs / retiree claims.  The Dem health care bill now retroactively ensures that the UAW took no "risk" because any shortfall as a result of the stock not being worth as much as the administration said it would be would be funded by another $10 billion of taxpayer funds through the “reinsurance” program. 

        Another point to make is that this goes far beyond “health care reform.”  It does not deal with the uninsured or health care costs.  These plans exist and can certainly get reinsurance coverage on their own through the private markets (and there is no requirement that the plan show that it cannot get private coverage before getting the government cheese “reinsurance”). Finally, calling it “reinsurance” is strange because there is no requirement in the legislation that the retiree health care plan actually pay anything to the government for “reinsurance” – this seems to be a pure taxpayer-funded subsidy of union retiree out of pocket health care costs and premiums.

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THE TWEET: Pg 95 HC Bill Lines 8-18 The Govt will use groups i.e., ACORN & Americorps 2 sign up indiv. for Govt HC plan.

MOSTLY TRUE

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THE BILL: This is correct (although ACORN is not specifically mentioned in the bill). 

        The relevant section provides that the "Health Choices Commissioner" created under the government plan "may work with other appropriate entities to facilitate the dissemination of information" regarding the government-run plan. 

        The bill does not specifically mention ACORN as an "appropriate entity" that may be chosen to provide information and facilitate enrollment in the government plan.  However, as with the Census and housing counseling, this administration has a penchant for hiring groups such as ACORN to provide similar services.             

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THE TWEET: Pg 110 Lines 13-18 An excise tax on ALL goods from companies not offering Govt HC. ALL Americans pay. 

MOSTLY FALSE

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THE BILL: This is incorrect / exaggerated. 

        The legislation calls the penalty on employers who fail to provide health insurance to their employees an "excise tax."  The author of the analysis correctly notes in another point that this is a tax on the employer.  However, the author suggests in this statement that the tax will also apply to every good sold or manufactured by the employer (similar to a VAT tax).  This is incorrect. 

        Companies will certainly pass the costs of the government penalty onto either its workers (through lower wages, less benefits, etc) or consumers (through higher prices) or both – thus it is likely that at least some and possibly "ALL Americans pay."  However, it is incorrect to state or suggest that the government will directly impose a tax on all goods made by the employer.     

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THE TWEET: pg 124 lines 24-25 HC No company can sue GOVT on price fixing. No "judicial review" against Govt Monop

TRUE

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THE BILL: This is correct.  The bill provides "[t]here shall be no administrative or judicial review of a payment rate or methodology established under this section or under section 224."  These sections deal with the government-plan payment rates.  Because there is no possibility for judicial review of payment rates, there is the possibility that the government can fix prices. 

        It should be noted that price fixing requires more than 1 participant.  The government would therefore need to be conspiring with some other entity to fix prices.  This section would seem to immunize both the government and the other conspirator from price-fixing charges. 

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THE TWEET: pg 127 Lines 1-16 HC Bill - Doctors/ #AMA - The Govt will tell YOU what u can make

FALSE

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THE BILL: This is incorrect / exaggerated. 

        The provision at issue relates to the government rates for payment of physician services.  This is the same as the current Medicare payment rates.  Setting compensation rates for given services (which all health insurance policies do) is far different from capping or dictating compensation limits for doctors (i.e., the "Pay Czar" and financal institutions). 

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THE TWEET: Pg 241 Line 6-8 HC Bill – Doctors, doesnt matter what specialty u have, you’ll all be paid the same:

BARELY TRUE

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THE BILL: This is true, but exaggerated. 

        This section of the bill establishes conversion factors based upon service categories for Medicare and Medicaid.  It is accurate to state that these changes apply "without regard to the specialty of the physician furnishing the service."  However, it is inaccurate to suggest that this means that all doctors – regardless of specialty – will be paid the same under the Medicaid / Medicare reimbursement system. 

        Here is an example.  Let's assume that the government reimbursement schedule for Medicare periodic check-ups is $100.  Under this section, a world-renown brain surgeon who decides that he wants to spend some time performing general check-ups for Medicare recipients will receive the same government reimbursement as a general practitioner providing the same services to the same Medicare patient -- $100.  That is because this section fixes the compensation based on the service provided – not the level of attainment of the physician providing the service. 

        Conversely, the government will presumably set higher reimbursement rates for brain surgery on Medicare recipients, which the world-renown surgeon will be able to receive but the GP will not because the GP lacks the expertise and training to perform these types of complicated procedures.           

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THE TWEET: Page 318: Prohibition on hospital expansion. Hospitals cannot expand without government approval. Page 321: Hospital expansion hinges on "community" input: in other words, yet another payoff for ACORN.

MOSTLY TRUE

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THE BILL: This is generally correct (although it also does not mention ACORN by name).

This looks a lot like a mini-version of the Community Reinvestment Act – which also gave community input into expansions (in that case bank mergers).  "Community organizing" groups used that power to essentially extort money from banks, getting money in exchange for not opposing bank mergers. 

        There are certainly valid reasons why community input might be relevant, and even advisable, for a decision about expanding a hospital's size.  However, the echoes of the CRA make it seem like another potential financial windfall for community groups. And the increased costs to make up the extortion payment would be born by the hospital's patients.          

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THE TWEET: End of life claims:  The e-mail contains a group of claims related to end of life provisions in the health care bill (pages 425-430).  These claims either state explicitly or suggest that the government will require that the recipient receive these services. 

FALSE

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THE BILL: The suggestion or explicit statement that these services are mandatory is incorrect.  These provisions all deal with voluntary services – provision of information requested by the consumer. 

        There may be several problematic aspects of these provisions, including having medical professionals (as opposed to lawyers) advising and counseling individuals on end of life documents such as health care proxies, living wills, etc.

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THE TWEET: PG 489 Sec 1308 The Govt will cover Marriage & Family therapy. Which means they will insert Govt in2 ur marriage. 

FALSE

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THE BILL: This is exaggerated. 

        The author is correct when he states that the bill expands the definition of covered medical services under existing government health plans to include marriage and family therapy. 

        However, this does not "insert the government into your marriage" any more than Medicare regulations authorizing the payment of chemotherapy treatments "inserts the government" into your relationship with your doctor. 

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THE TWEET: Pg 769 3-5 Nurse Home Visit Svcs – “increasing birth intervals btwn pregnancies.” Govt ABORTIONS any1?

FALSE

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THE BILL: This is exaggerated. 

        The author is correct when he states that the bill provides for federal payment of charges for visiting nurse services when the services are determined by the Secretary of Health and Human Services to be effective in, among other things, "[i]mproving maternal or child health and pregnancy outcomes or increasing birth intervals between pregnancies."

        The provision covers only "home visits by trained nurses to families with a first-time pregnant woman, or a child (under 2 years of age)" that meets the income threshold requirements for government medical assistance.  The provision does not specifically mandate that the visiting nurse advise the pregnant woman or low-income family to have abortions as a means of increasing birth intervals.   

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William "Bill" Kelly is 95-year-old World War II veteran from Oregon. He lived through the Great Depression.
He served in the South Pacific during World War II. And now he has just fought the coronavirus -- and won.

Bill joined Glenn Beck on the radio program Thursday to share his experience and a hopeful message about why the younger generations can overcome this crisis.

"I want to tell the people, it wasn't pleasant, but on the other hand, you know, if you do what you're supposed to do, and you have some loved ones around you, and do a lot of praying, why, you'll come through okay. We [American's] have been through a lot. We've been through Pearl Harbor. We've been through the Great Depression, and who knows what else. We're tough. We'll get through it. Hang in there," Bill said.

"You know, it's just -- it's in our American blood," he added. "We're that type of people. We take care of each other, and we are not going to break down. We're going to make it through, every time. Every time."

"There are people that don't think we are those people anymore. That it was the greatest generation -- your generation -- that did it, but now we're not the same people. Do you agree with that? Glenn asked.

"No," asserted Bill. "And the reason I say that is because I remember when I was a young kid, you know, and people, the older people, said 'all those young kids are soft' ... but when we were attacked at Pearl Harbor -- sneak attack, you know -- it's surprising how those so-called goofy kids turned into mighty fine fighting people. And they're very loyal. I have lots of faith in them ... no, I don't have any problems with this new generation. They'll take care of us. We're Americans."

Watch the video below to catch more of the conversation:

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Glenn gives the latest coronavirus numbers, updating YOU on everything needed to know as Americans and officials monitor China's new COVID-19 virus:

Daily Stats as of 5:30 AM CT (from John's Hopkins)

  • Total Confirmed Cases Worldwide: 950,638 (up from 872,891 Yesterday)
  • Total Deaths Worldwide: 48,289 (up from 43,271 Yesterday)
  • Total Confirmed Recovered Worldwide: 202,631 (up from 184,588 Yesterday)
  • 5% of Active Cases are considered serious (requiring hospitalization) Steady from 5% Yesterday, but down from 19% high back in February
  • Note that 12% of US Confirmed Cases require Hospitalization, roughly on par with Italy at 12% requiring hospitalization
  • US has 215,344 Confirmed Cases and 5,112 Deaths, up from 188,592 cases and 4,056 deaths yesterday
  • COVID-19 is now the 3rd leading cause of death in the US, behind Heart Disease and Cancer (based on daily fatalities per 1,000 people)
  • The United States of America now leads the world in total confirmed cases, with 115,000 more cases than Italy (although Italy leads the world in Deaths with 13,155 officially dead)
  • US is 25th in Total Confirmed Cases per 1 Million Population, with 651 cases per 1 Million people. Spain has 2,583 Cases per 1 Million people.
  • US is 23rd in Total Confirmed Dead per 1 Million Population, with 15 Dead per 1 Million citizens. Italy has 218 Dead per 1 Million.
  • US has 5,112 Dead vs 8,878 Recovered and 5,075 in Critical Condition
  • The US currently has 201,354 Active Cases of COVID-19, with still less than 1% of the total US population tested.
  • 17% of Americans who have been tested have been diagnosed with COVID-19
COVID-19 Now Killing Victims Who Don't Have COVID-19 https://nypost.com/2020/04/02/coronavirus-nyc-emts-stop-taking-cardiac-arrest-patients-to-hospitals/
  • EMTs in New York have been given a directive not to transport heart-attack victims to hospitals if they cannot be revived at the scene.
  • Prior cardiac arrest victims would have been transported to hospitals for further life-saving procedures, but with hospitals being overwhelmed with COVID-19 patients, heart attack victims are solely in the hands of local EMTs. If EMTs cannot restore a pulse at the scene, victims are to be left there to die.
  • "Artificial ventilation and/or compressions must not be delayed," the memo states, adding that chest "compressions must begin as soon as it is determined the patient does not have a pulse."
  • But the guidelines change if the patient cannot be revived before arriving at a hospital.
  • "In the event a resuscitation is terminated, and the body is in public view, the body can be left in the custody of the NYPD."
China Lied, People Died Trending on Social Media https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-04-01/china-concealed-extent-of-virus-outbreak-u-s-intelligence-says
  • US Intelligence Services has concluded what the Internet has known since January: The Chinese Communist Party lied about total infected and total deaths due to Coronavirus.
  • Citing a report provided to the White House last week, officials confirmed that US Intelligence concludes 'gross' underreporting of total cases and total deaths, especially from Hubei Province.
  • Many have speculated that numbers coming out of China, Iran, North Korea, Russia and other totalitarian countries have been dramatically underreported, by as much as a factor of 10 according to official British Intelligence reports.
  • The early misrepresentation of data by the CCP may have lead some Western Politicians and epidemiologists to underestimate the seriousness of COVID-19 and delayed response in Italy, Spain, the UK and the US.
  • Though why anybody would have believed anything the Chinese Communist Party had to say remains an open question...
Italy's Death Toll Far Higher Than Reported https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/italys-coronavirus-death-toll-is-far-higher-than-reported/ar-BB122vvc
  • In the town of Coccaglio, an hour's drive east of here, the local nursing home lost over a third of its residents in March. None of the 24 people who died there were tested for the new coronavirus. Nor were the 38 people who died in another nursing home in the nearby town of Lodi.
  • These aren't isolated incidents. Italy's official death toll from the virus stands at 13,155, the most of any country in the world. But that number tells only part of the story because many people who die from the virus don't make it to the hospital and are never tested, therefore they aren't included in official numbers.
  • "They were all sick, they all had flu-like symptoms and difficulty breathing," stated a nurse from one of the nursing homes. "We had no ambulance to get them to Milan."
  • In the areas worst hit by the pandemic, Italy is undercounting thousands of deaths caused by the virus, a Wall Street Journal analysis shows, indicating that the pandemic's human toll may end up being much greater, and infections far more widespread, than official data indicate.
  • As stretched and sometimes overwhelmed hospitals fight to save their patients, many other people die unseen and uncounted, including elderly people in out-of-the-way locations.
  • In addition, the health-care crisis can lead to a surge of deaths from other causes that would normally be treatable.
  • "There are many more dead from the virus than are officially declared... People died and they were never tested because time and resources are limited," Eugenio Fossati, deputy mayor of Coccaglio, says of deaths caused by the virus.
More Numbers Hard to Trust as Bodies Left On The Streets in Ecuador https://www.scmp.com/news/world/americas/article/3078077/coronavirus-bodies-are-being-left-streets-ecuador
  • Coronavirus: bodies are being left on the streets in Ecuador.
  • 'They fall in front of hospitals or in back street alleys, or in small villages…no one wants to recover them,' says the mayor of Ecuador's largest city.
  • The army is placing unclaimed bodies in refrigerated cargo containers at the port while authorities pursue plans for a new cemetery.
  • The corpses have been overwhelming Guayaquil, a port city of 2.8 million at the epicenter of the coronavirus crisis in Ecuador.
  • Over the last few days, several were wrapped in plastic and left on the streets. Others have lain unclaimed in hospitals and clinics that have been overwhelmed by infections. The city morgue is full.
  • The majority of the dead are believed to be victims of the virus, but nobody can say for sure how many. There has been little testing.
  • The country has confirmed 2,700 infections and 93 deaths - 60 of them in Guayaquil and its immediate surroundings. But municipal officials there said they have recovered at least 400 bodies in the last 3 days.
  • Mayor Cynthia Viteri, who announced that she has also tested positive for the virus, said the national government should be responsible for collecting the corpses.
  • "They're leaving them in the villages, they are stacked in front of hospitals," she said in a Twitter video message to residents late last week.
  • Many local villages in Ecuador are simply burying the dead in unmarked graves, which will make official counting of COVID-19 victims impossible in the weeks ahead.
50% of Viral Spread Comes from People With No Symptoms https://www.cnn.com/2020/04/01/health/us-coronavirus-updates-wednesday/index.html
  • Researchers in Iceland have confirmed earlier reports from Hong Kong that a significant amount of viral spread is caused by carriers who have no symptoms.
  • In the US, Doctors at the CDC have confirmed asymptomatic spread, but estimate a number of about 25%.
  • If true, then the case for all persons to wear masks, even those who don't have symptoms, becomes much stronger.
  • To prevent further spread, the top infectious disease expert in the US says health officials are reconsidering guidance on face masks.
  • Dr. Anthony Fauci said he would "lean towards" recommending that the general public wear face masks "if we do not have the problem of taking away masks from the health care workers who need them. The public can stay home to avoid infection, but health care workers cannot," he said.
  • "We're not there yet, but I think we're close to coming to some determination," Fauci said.
Ship vs Train... Ship Wins https://abc7.com/usns-mercy-coronavirus-train-crash-derailment/6069395/
  • A Locomotive Engineer in Los Angeles has been charged with 1 Count of "Train Wrecking", a Class A Felony under Federal Law, after purposely derailing his freight train while attempting to sink the US Hospital ship Mercy.
  • Eduardo Moreno, 44, intended to hit the ship, saying he thought it was "suspicious" and did not believe "the ship is what they say it's for.'"
  • Moreno admitted to crashing the train intentionally but said he did not plan it out in advance. It is believed that he acted alone.
  • He allegedly made statements to a CHP officer that included "You only get this chance once. The whole world is watching. I had to. People don't know what's going on here. Now they will."
  • Officials say video from inside the train's cab shows Moreno holding a lighted flare during the incident.
Biggest Issue With COVID-19 in Malaysia: Nagging Wives https://www.npr.org/2020/04/01/825051317/dont-nag-your-husband-during-lock-down-malaysias-government-advises-women
  • Malaysia has the largest number of COVID-19 cases in Southeast Asia with more than 2,900 and counting.
  • This week, Malaysia's government also had a serious public relations issue after an ill-conceived plan went online.
  • Malaysia's Ministry for Women, Family and Community Development issued a series of online posters on Facebook and Instagram with the hashtag #WomenPreventCOVID19. It advised the nation's women to help with the country's partial lockdown by not nagging their husbands.
  • The ministry also advised women to refrain from being "sarcastic" if they asked for help with household chores.
  • Additionally, the Ministry urged women working from home to dress up and wear makeup.
  • After some negative response on social media, the public service messages have been removed from the Ministry's Facebook page.

MyPillow inventor and CEO Mike Lindell was lambasted by the left and mainstream media after he announced at a White House press briefing on Monday that his company will start making tens of thousands of masks to fight against the spread of coronavirus. Lindell also thanked God for President Donald Trump and encouraged Americans to turn back to God in this time of crisis.

Read the details here.

Whether it was his support for President Trump or strong religious beliefs, no one has lit up the media quite like Mike Lindell. He joined Glenn Beck on the radio program Monday to talk about the president, the 'horrible, crazy media' and how he's not afraid to keep speaking out about his faith.

"I think people are going to quit being brainwashed by this horrible, crazy media -- they know who they are -- and the public is going to see the amazing job that our president is doing," Lindell said. "I've done interview after interview today. I'm taking all the bad ones on -- I think I'm going on 'The View' tomorrow I love it. I want to go right into the hurricane. Finally, I get to speak out for Jesus like I want to."

Watch the video below to catch more of the conversation:

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News broke that German Finance Minister Thomas Schaefer reportedly committed suicide on Saturday due to the stress from the economic climate during the coronavirus crisis. Unfortunately, this headline may become more common place. Concerns are far beyond those of just hand washing, finding toilet paper and the latest White House briefings. There may be a secondary crisis growing — mental health and suicide.

Messages fill my inbox daily from parents worried about their teens showing signs of risk of suicidal ideation. Spouses concerned about the toil recent layoffs will have on their partners. Elderly family members are also vulnerable.

Last week, news a father of three dying by suicide made me want to scream to the world – "LISTEN!" We are losing too many of our human family. And I am afraid with COVID-19 on the scene, we are going to lose more than ever.

During the past six years — following the suicide of my 40-year-old sister — my mission has been to bring awareness and help prevent suicide. Everyone is exposed to suicide. You either struggle with depression/anxiety, you love someone that struggles, or like me, you have already lost someone to suicide. That is literally everyone on the planet. Bigger numbers than even the virus.

Little known fact. Springtime is a peak season for suicides. Even compared to the holidays.

Little known fact. Springtime is a peak season for suicides. Even compared to the holidays.

So, pile on the constant stream of news, stats about COVID-19 deaths and a lock down on social distancing, even the most emotionally skilled individual may be drowning in vulnerability and at risk.

What can be done?

Social distancing, not isolation

Even though we are standing 6ft apart in the grocery stores, and no longer going to church together, humans need connection to survive.

Free communication apps like Marco Polo are a great way to not hide behind a text. Whether it is on video chat or old fashion letter writing, making connection a priority is crucial for our survival.

Emotional check-in

The new normal seems to be changing by the hour. It is hard to keep up, recalibrating with all the change. Just like the importance of taking temperature to check for virus symptoms, we need to monitor our emotional temp. Try the one word check-in, at dinner time, simply by asking, "How am I feeling today?" It can be a great barometer.

Naming our feelings keep them tamed.

It's Ok to not be Ok

It is crucial to our survival to frame this crisis with a mental health back drop. Suicide, depression and anxiety concerns should be at the top of the STAY HOME and STAY SAFE list. If you find yourself feeling helpless or having thoughts of self-harm, please reach out for additional support. Therapists are using online formats to serve their clients. Call your doctor or one of the many 1-800 numbers.

No one is an extra, disposable member of our human family.

If you are reading this and struggling. Please remember, we will never be better without you. No one is an extra, disposable member of our human family. We will make it thru this COVID-19 crisis stronger and closer than before. No longer will we take hugging our neighbor for granted.

And maybe, just maybe we will someday find the vaccine that stops suicide virus from spreading.

Ganel-Lyn is a public speaker, media personality & author