The Affordable Care Act’s Impact on Medical Doctors

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A conversation about Obamacare’s negative effects on the healthcare industry

Brett Newcomb and I are passionately committed to having active lively and open discussions about health related topics and issues. We believe that an informed consumer is more likely to be a healthy consumer. We don’t always agree, but we always want to seek out the best answer we can find that will benefit individual patients the most and not bankrupt the country. This week we are talking about the new changes coming to America under the Affordable Care Act and the Affordable Care Act’s impact on medical doctors.

We think it is important to look as globally as possible when we frame a discussion about something like the ACA. We do not want to micro-focus on just one single aspect of the topic and draw conclusions from that single fact. One way to look globally at a discussion of health care is to begin with the topic of how the government obtains revenue and how it spends it. What should be the role of the government in setting up health care exchanges and regulating the health care industry? What is appropriate? Something is needed but is there a better direction to take? What might be a better way to go?

As an example of how the federal government manages programs of this type, Brett and I spent some time discussing the drug war. We have spent millions and millions of dollars attempting to regulate, suppress, and punish those who chose to use marijuana. We ask the question: Is this the best way to go about dealing with the issue of marijuana in America? Is that the best way to spend our money?

Medical treatment must be between the patient and doctor, but government will manage from afar the intimate details of our health. Doctors pay for their own education (7-13 years of training) at high cost, and run a business, but cannot increase their fees when the government dictates what should be paid for each service. It doesn’t increase with the cost of living either. The fact is that if doctors can’t afford to repay their education, run their offices and pay themselves they will do something other than medicine

If America does not figure out a better way to fund the training of new doctors, and allow them to increase prices with their cost increases, there will be a shortage of physicians to meet the needs of the people. Other countries select medical students and pay for their educations using strategies much different from ours, that’s the only way a socialized medical system can be sustained. Are those better or worse? How does physician education contribute to the cost of healthcare in America?

We offer some ideas, but the challenge is complex. We are passionately invested in seeking answers through open dialogue. Please participate.

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