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Obamacare's Premonition: Doctor Exodus From Health Care System
Tuesday, 14 August 2012 13:09
Written by Chuck Justice
Marc Siegal, FOX News contributor and associate professor of medicine at NYU, details recent survey results, which should be a wake up call for every American that supported Obamacare. The Doctor Patient Medical Association Foundation found that, of those surveyed, 83% of physicians are considering quitting because of Obamacare and 90% think the U.S. health care system is going in the wrong direction. And Obamacare isn't even close to being fully implemented, which makes the results so frightening.
Obamacare was rammed into law by ideological liberals that had no idea what was included in the bill, but that wasn't a concern for them. It involved the government getting taking over aspects of the health care system, which is all they care about. As the time nears for full implementation, Obamacare only gets more unpopular. The time for crisis will come when doctors do begin leaving their profession, which is inevitable.
From Marc Siegal posted on Forbes:
This result is not a surprise; patients everywhere need to be concerned that Obamacare is putting an enormous new weight on the back of doctors who were already over-burdened.
This survey is not alone. Previous surveys by Athena, Sermo, Deloitte, the Doctors Company Survey, the Physicians Foundation, and IBD/TIPP have clearly shown that most doctors are unhappy with the direction of things, and a clear majority are opposed to the health care law. The Physicians Foundation survey in 2010 found that physicians view Obamacare “as a further erosion of the unfavorable conditions with which they must contend.”
Worse than our eroding fees and our perpetual fear of malpractice is the yoke we must work under. We want to help our patients but all too often the test or treatment we order is challenged by an insurer. This past week alone I had to argue for three life saving medications and four crucial tests that were initially denied.
Will doctors actually quit or just become more and more unhappy and dysfunctional? Most of us are locked into a career and a lifestyle that we can’t change. We have trained for many years to get to this point. Instead of quitting, most of us will continue to struggle along with the rising Obamacare regulations and restrictions with over a hundred new federal agencies and thirty-three new regulatory committees. We will accept lower incomes amid rising expenses while spending less and less time with our patients because frankly we have no other choice.
Will the best and the brightest continue to choose medicine as a career? Medical school admissions are down by 6% at a time when the Association of American Medical Colleges predicts a shortage of 160,000 by 2025. And the effective shortage of doctors who will work with Obamacare is far greater. Doctors who are already in practice will drop out of insurances, move to hospitals to work for a salary, or accept cash only. This trend will create a two-tiered system of health care and could be a knife in the back of Obamacare, which relies on physician participation with insurances and its expanded patient load to survive.
What this details is that there could very likely be an exodus of doctors leaving the system, particularly as Obamacare begins to be fully implemented. The burdens of the new law, most of which isn't even fully known yet, will impact the health care system in ways that will affect every American. But none of this is news for anyone that bothered to research the law and look at other countries (Canada, England) with similar systems - it's simply unsustainable.
There is no good news to come from Obamacare. It needs to be repealed.
Chuck Justice is the editor-in-chief for Habledash.