How the Obamacare “public option” will control costs

9 08 2009

I just came from a social gathering tonight that happened to be hosted by  medical doctor.  I engaged this gentleman in a conversation about the pending healthcare legislation.  He is very active in the California Medical Association and quite conversant on the proposals.  We were talking about the so-called “public option” and how it will affect the delivery of healthcare services.  He is a partner in a 700-physician emergency room doctor firm.  

He asked me: “Do you know how much I get paid to see a Medicaid patient?”  Answer:  “Twenty two dollars.  It costs me three dollars to send the bill, and three more to pay my insurance.  That’s before anyone has seen the patient, before we’ve paid any staff or anything.  I can only see four patients an hour, maybe.  It just doesn’t work.” (The doctor then shifts cost to privately insured patients.  This is why private insurance costs more every year — because the government keeps squeezing doctors.)

That, my friends, is how the government controls its healthcare costs right now, and how it will control healthcare costs in when the government has a monopoly on the industry.  Now I ask you some questions:  

1. How long do you think your insurance company will stay in business when the competition (the government) is paying the doctor 20% of what a private insurance company has to pay?  

2. How long do you think your doctor will stay in business ( or accept government insurance)?

3. What will be the incentive for an investor to invest in new medical technology, new drugs, or even a hospital building, when the medical industry is being asphyxiated by lowball government reimbursement rates?

Obamacare will result in fewer doctors, fewer hospitals, fewer drugs, less innovation, shortages of every product and service, long waits for every kind of treatment (if you can even get it), and lousy quality of care.  That’s even before we consider the fact that it constitutes a severe encroachment on your personal liberties where it counts the most — the care and feeding of your body.

Only idiocy could drive this nation to approve such a disaster.


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