Archive for the ‘universal healthcare’ Category

More primary care MD’s needed for Obama’s promised healthcare reform

December 1, 2008

After a survey came out disclosing the frustration of primary care doctors who suffer in their job, the American College of Physicians (ACP) followed with a paper culled from more than 100 studies from the last 2 decades.

The report details the need for more primary care physicians whose number is dwindling. They are needed to improve healthcare and lower the cost of treatment.

If primary care physicians in a metropolitan area are increased by 15 %, researchers on health care utilization believe there will be beneficial cuts in the following services: emergency room 10.9%, surgeries 7.2%, inpatient admission 5.5% and out patient visits 5%.

In the last 10 years, US medical graduates entering family medicine and internal medicine have decreased to half its number. Many young doctors prefer high-paying specialties with less demand for time to see patients.

The developing doctor shortage crisis is a result of extended hours, low pay for primary care, and paperwork hassles associated with medicare, Medicaid, and private insurers. Sixty percent (60%) of surveyed MDs won’t recommend their profession. —American Medical News (12/08/08, O’ Reilly, Hedger, B)

The situation is best characterized by Ted Epperly, MD, president of the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) when he said, “What remains unclear is how politicians’ promises to rescue primary care will play out in a likely fierce battle over health system reform. But raising awareness of the crisis is the start of finding a solution…. This won’t be turned around overnight. It will take a decade to get out from under this.“

A decade! That’s 10 years. 3,650 days!

A decade to correct the problem is incredibility long in the face of increasing health needs of Americans and rising cost of medical care. Obama has been served the notice. =0=

MDs plan to quit & its potential impact when 46 million uninsured Americans get their medical coverage

November 19, 2008

Before Pres. Barack Obama can assume office and work on his promised universal health care for Americans, primary care physicians in the United States are saying they are overworked.

Almost half of them plan to cut back on their practices or quit seeing patients. They are lobbying for rational reimbursements in their insurance claims particularly on Medicare and Medicaid patients.

In the survey by the Physician’s Foundation, 90% percent of doctors complain they devote too much time in paper work rather than take care of patients. Frustrated by the work environment, 60% of those surveyed is not recommending medicine as a career. Reuters (11/17/08, Fox, M; Wilson, C)

Experts say that there’ll be an increase in number of those who’ll need health care services. A rise of work load required for the aging Americans and the newly insured plus the upward climb in cost of treatment and medicines are likely to lead to a rationed medical care that Americans haven’t been used to.

Under the plan of Obama, 46 million uninsured will gain access to medical services. If not handled correctly, these may mean more triage of patients in the emergency rooms, longer lines in the doctor’s offices, greater cuts on tests, denials on procedures, and slowing of getting consultation appointments and treatments. The current health care isn’t ready to absorb the volume of work, much worse, if doctors scale down their practices or retire early from their jobs. (Photo Credits: by Julie70; Allsus)=0=