In the Nick of Time: Baby Oliver and the Single-Payer Fiasco

July 24

Photo shared on Boston Children’s Hospital Facebook page.

By John Paulton, manager of grassroots mobilization for Family Policy Alliance®

If you’ve followed the saga of Baby Oliver – the British baby with the life-threatening heart tumor – you’ll be glad to know that the good ‘ol U.S. of A. came to this young Brit’s rescue. But how it happened is an amazing saga – and also very instructive to some left-wing American politicians … or at least to their constituents.

Oliver Cameron, in case you weren’t following the limited coverage here in America, is a baby boy born with cardiac fibroma – a large, non-cancerous tumor on the heart. Without surgery, his life would be measured in mere months.

But the National Health Service (NHS), the U.K.’s socialized health care system, informed Oliver’s parents that they didn’t have a single doctor who could do the surgery. Instead, he would be placed on a waiting list for a heart transplant that – even if it came to pass – would probably not extend his life to adulthood.

That’s when his parents, Lydia and Tim, began looking for alternatives. Eventually, they found an answer – in America.  Boston Children’s Hospital had successfully performed such a surgery, and the doctors there said Oliver was a good candidate for the same surgery.

Problem solved, right? Hardly. First, the government denied the request to cover the cost of Oliver having surgery in Boston. Then, they denied the request to have the Boston surgeons perform the surgery in the U.K.

So Lydia and Tim took the bull by the horns and began raising donations through an online site to cover the quarter-million-dollar cost. By the time they had raised two-thirds of the money, the NHS decided that they needed to fund the surgery to avoid a public relations nightmare – especially in the aftermath of the death of Charlie Gard, the British boy for whom the NHS had denied free offers of help from international sources, including the Vatican.

The surgery was a complete success. Baby Oliver is reportedly doing exceptionally well.

But his entire episode – particularly on the heels of the Charlie Gard disaster – raises serious questions about why some American politicians want to bring the same, single-payer, government-run health system to our shores.

From Boulder congressman Jared Polis (who is running for Colorado governor) to the latest socialist sensation, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of the Bronx, the Left’s calls for a government takeover of medicine in America are becoming widespread.

But if that happens, where will the Baby Olivers of the world go? The calls for government-run, single-payer healthcare are cloaked in the language of compassion. But as Baby Oliver and Charlie Gard remind us, the real result is cold-hearted government control.


Credit to and The American Spectator for portions of the information contained in this report.