Thursday, November 5, 2009

Health Care Bill: What will happen? Well, Your Doc Will......

Posted by ShoZu

Let's look at the medical profession on the simplest level. Doctor's businesses have an overhead that must be met in order to stay open. All businesses must collect money to meet the cost of doing business. When any business brings in less money than their overhead, they go out of business. The Obamacare platform is based on cuts to reimbursement fees and removing waste and fraud. Does the President believe no measures are in place that already do this? Of course!! Medicare has regular audits and reviews, inspections of offices, and so much regulation already, the repeating of such measures in this new bill is waste itself! Look up RAC's in google. Look up cases already caught committing fraud. Who is catching these violators? Thank you Sheik Obama but position is already filled!

What about wasteful spending? Well, if TORT reform were addressed, the cost of doing business for the medical profession would go down. Malpractice would be legitimized itself. Why aren't we going after fraud in the LEGAL world? There is a problem that is severely detrimental to all aspects of society. While some lawyers perform their jobs with integrity, the illegitimacy is so wide spread here that it commands a never ending joke! This problem is so wide spread that it has changed the grounds for what people think they can sue for. A lawyer advertised!! Another billboard said "DUI. You are never over the limit! Call our offices." A potential patient called a doctor's office (friend of mine) several years ago. He was from out of town and had insurance which was only valid in his state and out of state ER. He said he has an infection, was a diabetic, and will be in town for another week. He states he has money to pay out of pocket but hates going to an ER and would prefer it if he could see him. He replied, "If you go to the ER, your necessary tests would be performed (Blood work, X-rays, given meds, etc) under insurance. Then, all your follow up treatment could be done at my office to minimize costs to you. This is your best line of treatment and your cheapest. I will be glad to see you at that point." The caller replied," Are you refusing to see me? Because if you are, I can sue, Y'know?." Needless to say, he wished him good luck and stood his ground.

TORT reform would also allow doctor's to order less tests? Well, this is not entirely true. If doctor's order tests en mass, why has this become habitual practice? Simple. Because lawyers sued doctor's for malpractice stating they didn't order enough to make a proper diagnosis. So, ordering tests gets proper treatment but we shouldn't be ordering them. Lawyers argue that things weren't done in their entirety to achieve the best care for a patient and the new bill wants to tell every citizen testing will be performed at a minmum because it is too often and costly. Wow! Either the standard of care is ordering enough tests to establish a correct diagnosis or a limited amount of tests to curtail costs. It can't be both!

Next, cutting business costs. Cutting business costs by implementing electronic medical records would decrease repeat tests and rid office space of paper clutter. It will prevent medication mistakes. Will streamline daily operation. All great points. The cost is tremendous. Legislation should not order electronic medical record usage. Let the market bring the cost down like it does with everything else. Once the costs are feasible, usage will increase accordingly.

Finally, covering the uncovered. People buy auto insurance because the law requires it. Some people pay more than others, depending on their record. Why is this different than health insurance? Car insurance is not more important than heath insurance! Why are no laws requiring every citizen to have it? If everyone had health insurance, the overall pool would be much larger, driving costs down for everyone and making people with preconditions or with newly diagnosed problems covered only slightly higher than healthy ones. That is the philosophy Sheik Obama is modeling to fund his own plan. So, the idea of covering everyone is great. Still, the government doesn't own the car insurance industry. It shouldn't own the health insurance industry either. Just make legislation mandating having it.

Doctor's treat patients all day long in addition to running the business itself. This includes bookkeeping, billing, filling out forms for insurance companies, running through policy changes every year, and much more. So, a doctor essentially has 2 jobs, being a doctor and a businessman. This is different from a worker who works 9-5 M-F and when they leave work, they go home. When taxes rise, expenses like energy and phone increase, and reimbursements from insurance companies decrease. In other words, nothing is static. The businesses are doomed to dissolve in this situation.

The government intends to eventually take over the industry of health insurance. The monies distributed to the medical professionals will be decreased absolutely. With costs going up, with the majority of doctors being over the age of 50 today, and the liability associated with practice without any discussion of TORT reform going on, the future of the industry is grim. Predictions for distributing care will be dramatically altered because doctors will retire, less are graduating now, and the ones still practicing will be overwhelmed with patients. The only solution will be to import doctors from other countries which is bound to happen.

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