Thursday, April 18, 2013

Dr. Hal Scherz: "Circumnavigating Obamacare"

Another great article by Dr. Hal Scherz, founder of Docs4PatientCare "In the three years since the law passed, it is becoming increasingly clear to everyone that centralizing control of the healthcare economy in Washington is increasing costs, causing confusion and making the bureaucracy more difficult to navigate. With each passing month, new surprises are revealed, just as Nancy Pelosi predicted. The newest revelation coming from Washington is the need for Obamacare Navigators. These individuals are “necessary” to assist people signing up for health insurance under the new state exchange systems. The “simple” 21 page application for federal insurance subsidies, along with the 61 page addendum, is apparently not quite as straightforward as promised. It has been suggested that these positions would be “awarded” to deserving individuals - supporters of this administration- union members, former ACORN employees, and other political cronies. The fact that voter registration has been included in the application suggests that only the “right people” will be hired as navigators. The truth is that the ACA is not and never was intended to “fix” American health care. Its purpose is to place control of American’s health care in the hands of Washington bureaucrats giving them enormous power and control of the electorate. If there was any doubt about this reality, it is quickly evaporating as the details of the law become clearer with each new healthcare revelation, now happening almost daily. The only possible way to accomplish the overly ambitious goal of providing health care for all, is with the creation of a massive and expensive new bureaucracy. The paradox should not be overlooked- healthcare spending is bankrupting our country, yet we are primed to spend far more money to create a massive bureaucracy in order to put it under government oversight. How everyone could not predict what we are currently witnessing is amazing. The ACA created 159 new commissions, boards and departments. This translates into a huge, new and expensive bureaucracy. It has been predicted that in California alone, 20,000 navigators will be necessary, which means that nationally, hundreds of thousands will be needed. The number of new government employees needed to staff all of these new agencies is incalculable. Currently, 1/3 of Americans are covered by government financed healthcare, which accounts for 1/5 of our GDP. If some in Washington have their way, and healthcare is eventually totally financed by the federal government, the costs of running the bureaucracy will consume such a large part of our budget, that we will be able to afford little else...." Full article here

Friday, April 12, 2013

Fed Up With Obamacare, Doctors Increasingly Prefer Cash For Care

Dr. Sally Pipes describes in this article an important option for patients concerned about the quality and availability of health care services to keep in mind as they notice growing bureaucratic restrictions on their choice of health care providers, diagnostic testing and procedures under increasing govt regulation: More doctors may be looking to cut out the progressively increasing paper work and extra-ordinary time and money-wasting and cost -inflating effects of government and insurance middle men through direct contracting with patients and direct payment for medical services: "Obamacare’s most intrusive changes to the healthcare marketplace — including the individual mandate whereby Americans must secure health insurance or pay a fine and its massive expansion of Medicaid — are less than a year from taking effect. Many doctors have decided that they’re not interested in seeing how those changes play out in their own practices. Nearly two-thirds of doctors say that they or their colleagues will retire earlier than planned over the next few years, according to a survey conducted by consulting firm Deloitte. Others are considering a departure from the current system of third-party payment. Instead, they’re exploring direct payment, with patients paying for care on their own. Patients should welcome this development. Not only does the move toward direct payment have the potential to reduce health costs — it could also yield higher-quality care..... Nearly 7 percent of doctors say they are planning to change to some form of direct-pay care in the next three years, according to a survey of 13,000 doctors done for the Physicians Foundation. The consulting firm Accenture projects that one in three doctors in independent practice will adopt “subscription-based care models.” One direct payment model that’s growing in popularity is “concierge” care, whereby doctors charge a monthly or annual fee for care — and bypass the administrative headaches associated with insurance and government programs altogether. The American Academy of Private Physicians — which represents cash-only doctors — estimates that the number of concierge doctors has shot up 30 percent in just the last year. Examples of these practices abound...."