The thing about spending the prestige for the items is that there's a significant trade off, especially at the lower levels. If you spend all your prestige on spiffy items, that's all well and good and now you've got a bunch of fancy magical items, but you're out of prestige. When you've spent all your money and prestige on gearing out your character, when you die and have no gold or prestige to come back with, then you're out of luck.
Yes, I understand most players would help chip in and bring a fellow party member back, but if someone's blasted everything they have instead of preparing for the inevitable, then I think it's important to let the group know before they start pouring out their funds to bring said character back. They decided to spend everything, perhaps that should be a lesson in learning about moderation.