Thursday, June 4, 2009

MedPAC and the Last Straw

Okay. First a little history...

Medicare, the socialized medicine program designed to give sub-standard health care to our nation's elderly and infirm, pays doctors fees for their services.

These fees are clearly too low, having failed to keep pace with inflation, much less the rising costs of doing business in medicine.

Nevertheless, these fees are "negotiated" with doctors through a supposedly "independent" panel of idiots,called MedPAC, who have themselves traditionally been overseen by Congress.

Just to give you some idea : MedPAC suggested for years that all doctors were making too much money. In order to cut Medicare costs, then, they recommended that physician fees be cut by 21% this year. This would have driven most primary care doctors like myself right out of seeing Medicare patients. This would have been a tragedy, mostly for Medicare patients.

It was only through the lobbying efforts of physicians' groups that this draconian pay cut was (temporarily) avoided.

Enter Obama the Wise. He said today to Senators Baucus and Kennedy that MedPAC could "negotiate" the physician payment schedule under his new Obamacare plan. But wait for the punchline...

In order to "protect" the members of MedPAC from the corrupting influence of the lobbyists, Obama plans to move MedPAC to the Executive Branch, thereby insulating them from any "influence" from the outside.

Now the translation. The President will decide what doctors will be paid. There will be no negotiation. Resistance is futile.

"I'll quit seeing their patients!" you may cry in outrage, as I did. Ah, but not so fast....

Obama has promised to nationalize physician licensure. You will see their patients, at their price, and you will keep your filthy mouth shut, declares the Omnipotent Warlord Obama, or he will strip you of your ability to make a living. It's the gulag, with a fancy 21st-century twist.

Welcome to Socialzed Medicine fellow doctors. This is what I've been screaming about. Maybe you'll believe me now.