Filed under: Capitalism, Democrat Corruption, Economy, Health Care | Tags: Encouraging Overusage, Obamacare, Shortage of Physicians
ObamaCare is much misunderstood. Its advocates talk about the free care they will receive, and fear that they might have a “pre-existing condition.” But ObamaCare is not about medical care or treatment. It is only about insurance. It is designed to gradually funnel everyone into single-payer, government-run, insurance because that is the earnest intent of the liberals who designed the system. Government will control the entire financial end of the whole system — what you pay and what you get.
What the left is not good at, are the unintended consequences. They’re not good at thinking things through; at least that’s what the evidence seems to show. The costs of insurance will be far higher than estimated. Current estimates expect costs to be much higher than originally set out, and the program hasn’t even been put into effect yet. The only government program in history that has come in under the original estimates, is the Medicare Drug benefit, and Liberals removed the incentives that made thrift possible.
When the government says we’ll just pay for whatever you need, people don’t pay attention to how much something costs, and they go to the doctor for things they might well have treated at home. Result: soaring costs.
Great attention has been paid to rules and regulations, but physicians have been totally ignored, except for plans to hold down payments for their services. There aren’t enough doctors. There is a current shortage of thousands of physicians. Doctors hate ObamaCare and very large numbers plan to find some other occupation, or to retire. Medical schools and teaching hospitals, as they exist today, are incapable of turning out the numbers of doctors needed.
When all those folks who were uninsured are forced to buy insurance or pay a big fine, then the young healthy people won’t use medical care much, and will pay for the older folks who require more care. And you won’t have all those people with no insurance running up the costs for the nation’s emergency rooms. The uninsured are not signing up in droves. But the organization of emergency room physicians has pointed out that the greatest emergency room use is not by the uninsured, but by insured people who cannot find a doctor to care for them.
ObamaCare has taken $716 billion out of Medicare between 2013 and 2022, to pay for ObamaCare. That means a $260 billion payment cut for hospital services. A $39 billion payment cut for skilled nursing services. A $17 billion payment cut for hospice services. A $66 billion payment cut for home health services. A $33 billion payment cut for all other services. A $156 billion cut in payment rates for Medicare Advantage programs. $56 billion in cuts for DSH Payments for low-income patients, and $114 billion in cuts in other provisions in Medicare,Medicaid and CHIP. What this means is that fewer doctors will be willing to treat Medicare and Medicaid patients. This is already a growing problem, and ObamaCare hasn’t even kicked in yet.
Should ObamaCare not be repealed, these problems will grow and fester. The government will have no option but to federalize the medical profession so doctors work for the government for a fixed salary. Otherwise there will simply be no doctors to serve patients. Where will they get those doctors? Medicine will no longer be an attractive profession, nor a rewarding one. Standards will necessarily decline, and the best students will no longer go into medicine. Where will the doctors come from?
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