There is nothing which I dread so much as a division of the republic into two great parties, each arranged under its leader, and concerting measures in opposition to each other. This, in my humble apprehension, is to be dreaded as the greatest political evil under our Constitution.
John Adams (1735-1826), Second President of the United States
In this partisan environment, physicians, who generally prefer a competitive market environment to government control, feel powerless and demoralized to change things, as reflected in a recent Physician Foundation survey of 630,000 physicians. Furthermore, the AMA, which backed Obamacare, has lost much of its credibility among physicians. Only 15% of physicians now belong to the AMA. American physicians feel leaderless. This is aggravated by the fact that the Obama administration tends to dismiss physician suggestions for reform – HSAs, market competition, tort reform – with a wave of the federal wand, and a curt dismissal of teh opposition. .
This is evident in these poll numbers of voters about National Health Policy issues (“Implications of the 2012 Election – The Voters’ Perspective,” New England Journal of Medicine, December 20. 2012)
Yet the political odds seem stacked against physician autonomy. In a Wall Street Journal interview yesterday “Cleveland Clinic Diagnoses Health-Care Act, “ Delos “Toby” Cosgrove, MD, a heart surgeon and Cleveland Clinic CEO concludes of Obamacare, “it’s going to be a faster move towards one payer. Increasingly people think that in 10 years you’re going to have 75% of the health-care costs paid by the federal government.”
The American creed is: One, the majority rules, Two; equality opporunity but not equal results for all.
The questions are - Does the majority rule for you? Or does it rule to make itself bigger and more powerful? Does it provide equal health care opportunies for all, or just for these it favors?
Tweet: For controlling health costs, Obamacare may be the problem and not the solution, but voters remain unconvinced of this reality.