- The Washington Times - Thursday, December 23, 2010


I must disagree with Holly Pitt Young’s Dec. 13 piece, “Will the FDA let women die?” (Commentary), although it is an admirable article.

I am a veteran, and when I signed up in 1972, I was promised health care for life. This perk is the only government benefit that I take advantage of even though I would qualify for food stamps, supplemental security income and many other welfare programs. Even as I work and pay taxes on my meager wages, I have made less than $50,000 a year my entire adult life, according to my Social Security statement.

My care at the Veterans Affairs (VA) center, while adequate, is basic. I no longer receive eye care, thus I wear 10-year-old glasses that are very scratched. I have pulled two of my own teeth and, mercifully, the others have fallen out.

My point is that by nature of living - and aging - all conditions are terminal. How can Ms. Young justify the use of my tax money to pay for Avastin at $90,000 a year per patient? My government made promises to its veterans that it has failed to uphold, and unless a woman is a veteran and needs Avastin to treat her condition, this cost is not justified. Of course, I am not optimistic that Avastin would be available at the VA anyway. Ms. Young is playing the guilt card that I - and most other veterans - know is from the bottom of the deck.


Retired Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class

Thurmont, Md.

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