The U.S. faces a doctor shortage

posted at 1:21 pm on November 5, 2013 by Bruce McQuain

Even if you manage to finally enroll in ObamaCare and get your subsidized health insurance, you have no guarantee of seeing a doctor.  And that problem is going to be exacerbated in the coming years as a shortage of physicians continues to grow according to projections:

This fall, millions of uninsured Americans seeking health insurance, many for the first time, overwhelmed the unprepared federal website, still under repair, built to give it to them. Next year, the same people, all heading to hospitals and physicians’ offices ready to make use of their new coverage, could crash something more tangible: the U.S. health care system itself.

America is running out of doctors, and next year’s influx of patients will strain the current supply. The nation will be 91,500 physicians short by 2020, according to the Association of American Medical Colleges. By 2025, that number is expected to swell to more than 130,600.

Next year, the demand will be highest for primary-care physicians, such as general internists, family doctors, and pediatricians—the kinds of doctors many people go to first for nonemergency medical attention before seeing specialists. Last winter, an Annals of Family Medicine study predicted the country will need 52,000 more primary-care physicians by 2025.

Of course, primary care physicians are the gate-keepers who are responsible for referring patients to specialists if needed.  They also, as the name implies, provide primary care to their patients.  No primary care doctor, no primary care and certainly no referrals to specialists.  With fewer and fewer primary care doctors and more and more insured, the likelihood that primary care doctors will be accepting new patients declines.

More and more of the brightest and best are looking at the medical profession and deciding to go elsewhere.  And more and more of the medical workforce is foreign-born and foreign-trained according to POLITICO:

A quarter of the U.S. physician workforce is foreign-educated, according to a new RAND Corp. study, which found that the country relies on foreign-born and foreign-trained medical professionals but doesn’t have a long-term plan in place. “There is no cohesive national policy that outlines a strategy for how to incorporate foreign-born and foreign-trained health professionals into the U.S. workforce,” said Dr. Peggy G. Chen, the study’s lead author. Researchers concluded that foreign-born registered nurses make up 12 to 15 percent of the U.S. RN workforce and that foreign-born nursing and home health aides constitute a quarter of the direct care workforce.

So while, according to the New York Times, we ought to be celebrating millions getting access to “free heath insurance” – even while knowing nothing the government gives you is “free” – it really won’t matter if you can’t find a doctor.

Will it?

Solution?

The same as before ObamaCare: Crowded ERs and interminable waits for treatment.

~McQ


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If you like your doctor, oh, screw it.

faraway on November 5, 2013 at 1:23 PM

Wife is a Family Practice resident – but she’s going to go into a sports medicine fellowship. Medicaid patients turned her off of family practice. They’re all entitled crazy people she says.

I’m sure thats a generalization of a few “bad apples” (rights reserved) but its enough to give an impression in her moderate little brain.

So good luck getting a doctor. The good ones are going cash-only.

Defenestratus on November 5, 2013 at 1:24 PM

They will simply import them from the third world.

Murphy9 on November 5, 2013 at 1:25 PM

Just wait until they find out that they will not be allowed to follow their Hippocratic Oath under 0bamasurance, nor get paid enough to repay their college loans.

LegendHasIt on November 5, 2013 at 1:25 PM

Next step, of course, is revoking the medical licenses of doctors who don’t accept O-care policies as payment. And then fines for doctors who treat patients for cash / direct payments. It’ll be the first Supreme Court issue in a century to be fought on the grounds of the 13th Amendment.

DarthBrooks on November 5, 2013 at 1:26 PM

Health insurance =/= Healthcare

It never has and it never will. All one has to do is look at countries with single-payer. They have the longest wait times in the world and many people die before they ever get to see a specialist or surgeon.

Resist We Much on November 5, 2013 at 1:26 PM

Not only is there a doctor shortage, but the insurance policies sold through the Obamacare exchanges further limit the doctors to which enrollees can have access. And God help you if you get dumped into Medicaid, which doctors are jumping out of as fast as they can– they’ll soon be down to one per county, or state. Right now, CoverCalifornia, the CA Obamacare exchange, can’t even tell you which doctor (or hospital) is covered by your shiny new Obamacare policy.

de rigueur on November 5, 2013 at 1:27 PM

They will simply import them from the third world.

Murphy9 on November 5, 2013 at 1:25 PM

They’re already here. Amnesty, remember?

Bat Chain Puller on November 5, 2013 at 1:32 PM

Obama said you can keep your doctor. Well, maybe he meant you can keep a doctor. Wait, that would have been a lie to. This excerpt from a ricochet comment bears repeating:

Over 100 million Americans will lose their Health Insurance and be forced to pay 50 to 100% more. They will be severely restricted in their choice of Doctor or Hospital. Their care will be rationed for sure. The Administration knew this from their own 2010 internal study published in the Federal Register. This is the source of the facts that are quoted.

This huge pool of Americans are being herded into a Web Site that does not work. If they should get through, there is a high likelihood that their most sensitive personal data will be compromised.

This is not a transfer payment scheme. A simple tax could have been passed that subsidized the poor’s Health Insurance. It would have been fabulously less expensive and would not have resulted in the total disruption of Health Care in America.

anotherJoe on November 5, 2013 at 1:35 PM

Doctors limit the number of Doctors there are. Can’t have them as common as auto mechanics. Where is the status, the money? Rarity makes more money.

BL@KBIRD on November 5, 2013 at 1:36 PM

All these doctors are worthless quitters. All they got into the business for was to put profits over people – they’d cut out your healthy tonsils and your healthy feet if they could.

/verbaluce

gwelf on November 5, 2013 at 1:36 PM

Solution?

The same as before ObamaCare: Crowded ERs and interminable waits for treatment.

~McQ

These are also the hallmarks of single-payer systems.

gwelf on November 5, 2013 at 1:38 PM

How many times does one have to hear, “having health insurance doesn’t guarantee seeing a doctor” before it sinks in?

“But…but…but..I thought health insurance meant I’d live forever.”
/LIVs

Bitter Clinger on November 5, 2013 at 1:38 PM

After a few years of Obamacare, and we Americans will start exploring ways to get on Canada’s waiting lists for healthcare.

Want a new business idea – start a company to capitalize on the next growth industry – Healthcare tourism.

Athos on November 5, 2013 at 1:39 PM

Physician’s Assistants will become commonplace.
How much education do you need when computers do most of the diagnosing based on tests now? When the numbers are bad, they show up in red.
Then the wait for a specialist will be 6 months but we’ll be glad to get an appointment.

vityas on November 5, 2013 at 1:40 PM

Quite a few doctors I know personally are taking early retirement to avoid this mess. Their experience and skills won’t be easily replaced.

The more I think about it, the only option is to stay healthy.

Now, who’s most likely to keep to fewer and lower risk sexual partners? Who’s most likely to drink, smoke, or use drugs? Who eats packaged convenience food or fast food every day?

OTOH, who can afford healthy food and take time to work out? Who lives in safer neighborhoods where there is a lower incidence of violence?

Just another way this hits the Dem’s own constituents harder….not that they’ll see it.

ElectricPhase on November 5, 2013 at 1:41 PM

Flash: Obama facing poll shortage – Gallup 39%

faraway on November 5, 2013 at 1:42 PM

This is just the latest of many more shoes yet to drop from the ACA onto the heads of Americans.

It wasn’t just that we had to pass the law to see what was in it, we had to wait for the 12,000+ pages of regulations to be written and it’s implementation to see what is in this EpicClusterFark.

Athos on November 5, 2013 at 1:43 PM

Ghostbusters

Schadenfreude on November 5, 2013 at 1:44 PM

Sane doctors, strike.

Go gulching and work by bartering.

Schadenfreude on November 5, 2013 at 1:45 PM

Just wait until they find out that they will not be allowed to follow their Hippocratic Oath under 0bamasurance, nor get paid enough to repay their college loans.

LegendHasIt on November 5, 2013 at 1:25 PM

There’s already a consideration to force them to accept Medicare/Medicaid patients, or not be allowed to practice.

Ayn laughs her dead azz off.

Schadenfreude on November 5, 2013 at 1:46 PM

Faraway… just an outlier according to the dems

Idiots

cmsinaz on November 5, 2013 at 1:47 PM

I don’t know why we as a free people continue to just accept what the government dictates. There are still ways to stop this. They are not easy and could get real ugly but just how much more crap will the people take before it does get ugly

bgibbs1000 on November 5, 2013 at 1:47 PM

Cause meet effect

neyney on November 5, 2013 at 1:49 PM

Want a new business idea – start a company to capitalize on the next growth industry – Healthcare tourism.

Athos on November 5, 2013 at 1:39 PM

It’s happening. Except a lot of American doctors to “vacation” in Panama City, as well.

de rigueur on November 5, 2013 at 1:49 PM

de rigueur on November 5, 2013 at 1:49 PM

“Except” = “Expect

de rigueur on November 5, 2013 at 1:50 PM

Sane doctors, strike.

Go gulching and work by bartering.

Schadenfreude on November 5, 2013 at 1:45 PM

My family’s PCP, an internal medicine MD, is quitting his practice and going to go clean teeth in his brother’s dental practice.

Murphy9 on November 5, 2013 at 1:51 PM

I don’t know why we as a free people continue to just accept what the government dictates. There are still ways to stop this. They are not easy and could get real ugly but just how much more crap will the people take before it does get ugly

bgibbs1000 on November 5, 2013 at 1:47 PM

With Boehner and McConnell? Tell me another one.

ElectricPhase on November 5, 2013 at 1:52 PM

I remember a Canadian woman saying on a hgtv show that she waited for 3 years for a primary physician, so she didn’t want to move out of the neighborhood. So, now your life will revolve around government-controlled medical care.

BTW a retired doc I know volunteers at a free clinic for the poor. The people who come are largely seeking drugs or some magical answer to their problem, like diabetes from being too fat. They forget to take their medication, they don’t lose weight…they are their own worst enemies, not victims of discrimination.

Sure, I want to extend some kind of care for the poor, but let’s be honest, it’s charity, not a right.

PattyJ on November 5, 2013 at 1:53 PM

Now, who’s most likely to keep to fewer and lower risk sexual partners? Who’s most likely to drink, smoke, or use drugs? Who eats packaged convenience food or fast food every day?

OTOH, who can afford healthy food and take time to work out? Who lives in safer neighborhoods where there is a lower incidence of violence?

Just another way this hits the Dem’s own constituents harder….not that they’ll see it.

ElectricPhase on November 5, 2013 at 1:41 PM

Obamacare is designed primarily to hit the taxpaying and working middle class and strip them of their assets. The Democrats will steal most of that money, but they’ll throw a few table scraps to their core constituencies (primarily non-workers) via Medicaid.

Some Democrats will get hit but the majority probably will not. We already saw in 2012 that peoples’ voting patterns will not really change over this because voting is more of an ethnic/cultural activity. The Democrats will lose a handful of seats in 2014, but those losses will be mostly erased during Hillary’s election in 2016.

Also, if amnesty happens, as a practical matter elections will cease to matter.

Doomberg on November 5, 2013 at 1:55 PM

With Boehner and McConnell? Tell me another one.

ElectricPhase on November 5, 2013 at 1:52 PM

I have never said we can fix this politically because we can’t. Those days are over.

bgibbs1000 on November 5, 2013 at 1:56 PM

You know what would really help?

Legalizing 30 million new medicaid entrants. That will clear things right up.

1+1=POTATO

jukin3 on November 5, 2013 at 1:57 PM

I don’t know why we as a free people continue to just accept what the government dictates. There are still ways to stop this. They are not easy and could get real ugly but just how much more crap will the people take before it does get ugly

bgibbs1000 on November 5, 2013 at 1:47 PM

With Boehner and McConnell? Tell me another one.

ElectricPhase on November 5, 2013 at 1:52 PM

Agreed here. Boehner and McConnell are now fully committed to supporting Obamacare; if it were to be repealed or rolled back, Ted Cruz would be hailed as a hero, which would weaken their personal power. It would also clear the way for him to the 2016 Republican nomination, and that will never be permitted. Expect no further “repeal” efforts even if Republicans win a Congressional supermajority in 2016. The best we will get are “fixes” and “tweaks” to Obamacare.

Doomberg on November 5, 2013 at 1:58 PM

I have never said we can fix this politically because we can’t. Those days are over.

bgibbs1000 on November 5, 2013 at 1:56 PM

For starters: DISOBEY.

I’m with Schadenfreude.

Bat Chain Puller on November 5, 2013 at 2:05 PM

Think we are facing a doctor shortage now? Wait until they pass amnesty and the 11 – 20 million illegals are granted amnesty and they start sponsoring their relatives.

Those who received amnesty in 1986 sponsored an average of five people, so we are looking at a population increase of 60 – 100 million and I doubt many of these people are physicians.

bw222 on November 5, 2013 at 2:06 PM

Tyrannical governments control their people in one of two ways: access to food, or access to health care. This is all about power, not providing medicine to the masses.

SailorMark on November 5, 2013 at 2:06 PM

The worlds so called doctors rejoice, employment in the USA. The AMA will have to adjust their qualification criteria for practicing in the USA. If not, the demoncrats will make them through law.

jake49 on November 5, 2013 at 2:06 PM

I’ve prepared a general use tincture that can treat everything from stiff joints to diabetes, from headaches to cancer. Using a combination of rare herbs from Asia and Science™, this medicine, previously only available to a wealthy few, is now available to everyone for the astonishing price of $29.95 a bottle.

^ Get used to it.

Axe on November 5, 2013 at 2:07 PM

Surely most of these 12 million illegal immigrants are doctors. They’ll do the doctoring that Americans won’t do, right?

jdpaz on November 5, 2013 at 2:07 PM

The dumbocraps should be very worried. I went over to the WaPo site to see how this was shaking down on the other side. I read Jonathon Capehart’s silly and ridiculous opinion about how the website failure is the fault of Republicans for not properly funding it.

But the surprise came in the comments–it looked like a typical Hot Air commenting section, right along with the one or two clueless trolls trying to defend the indefensible.

When you’ve lost the WaPo readers you’ve lost the war.

NOMOBO on November 5, 2013 at 2:08 PM

Physician’s Assistants will become commonplace.
How much education do you need when computers do most of the diagnosing based on tests now? When the numbers are bad, they show up in red.
Then the wait for a specialist will be 6 months but we’ll be glad to get an appointment.

vityas on November 5, 2013 at 1:40 PM

Picture the diagnosis button board in the hospital in Idiocracy with the idiot female “nurse” (Verbaldouche?) trying to figure out which button to press.

dentarthurdent on November 5, 2013 at 2:10 PM

When you’ve lost the WaPo readers you’ve lost the war.

NOMOBO on November 5, 2013 at 2:08 PM

I’m too cynical these days to believe that.
They’ll just dumb down the education system further – see Common Core.

dentarthurdent on November 5, 2013 at 2:12 PM

You know… 1993′s HillaryCare tackled the doc shortage with brutal honesty.

myrenovations on November 5, 2013 at 2:18 PM

My sister’s husband is a specialist (a very well paid one), and they’ve said since the OCare debate started four years ago that if it passed, he would retire early (he’s about 60).

Ward Cleaver on November 5, 2013 at 2:21 PM

just how much more crap will the people take before it does get ugly

bgibbs1000 on November 5, 2013 at 1:47 PM

I don’t know. I’m angry and frustrated, but here I sit impotently reading and commenting on a blog. What will it take me to DO something? Who is willing to risk livelihood? That is the cornerstone of providing security for yourself and your family. At what point am I willing to put my family at real risk? Perhaps it’s coming and I don’t see it. Do you?

freedomfirst on November 5, 2013 at 2:23 PM

How many times does one have to hear, “having health insurance doesn’t guarantee seeing a doctor” before it sinks in?

Most likely as many times as. “having health insurance doesn’t equate to quality healthcare.”

Didn’t CA just pass a bill that pretty much allows anyone that takes an online course to preform abortions? That is what it is coming to everyone. Out with doctors and in with nurse practitioners. Next Barbers will be yanking teeth for us. Oh, and don’t forget the old Chinese guy in Chinatown that will sell you the ground up cockroaches for your ills. With BOcare you have to pay 100% of your healthcare anyway so who would you trust. Some hack that got a permit to hand out prescriptions because he voted dem or an old Chinese guy claiming ancient knowledge. I suspect the old guy may be the lesser risk.

Dr. Frank Enstine on November 5, 2013 at 2:40 PM

I don’t know. I’m angry and frustrated, but here I sit impotently reading and commenting on a blog. What will it take me to DO something? Who is willing to risk livelihood? That is the cornerstone of providing security for yourself and your family. At what point am I willing to put my family at real risk? Perhaps it’s coming and I don’t see it. Do you?

freedomfirst on November 5, 2013 at 2:23 PM

Summed up nicely. When do people decide the risk is worth it. How many people need there be. Are you more willing in a crowd of 10 or 10 thousand? Most people don’t want to risk everything in their life unless their life depended on having to do so.

Dr. Frank Enstine on November 5, 2013 at 2:42 PM

I’ve prepared a general use tincture that can treat everything from stiff joints to diabetes, from headaches to cancer. Using a combination of rare herbs from Asia and Science™, this medicine, previously only available to a wealthy few, is now available to everyone for the astonishing price of $29.95 a bottle.

^ Get used to it.

Axe on November 5, 2013 at 2:07 PM

What, no cockroaches? Crap if there are no cockroaches.

Dr. Frank Enstine on November 5, 2013 at 2:44 PM

I don’t know why we as a free people continue to just accept what the government dictates. There are still ways to stop this. They are not easy and could get real ugly but just how much more crap will the people take before it does get ugly

bgibbs1000 on November 5, 2013 at 1:47 PM

Most of the willing that see what is happening are too old, too fat and unhealthy to be very effective. The young we need to do the heavy lifting for us are all to brainwashed by 12 to 16 years of leftest/liberal crap being shoved at them. There is no one to fight for the “old” America. The ones that can would rather fight for gay rights and illegals than for their hateful slave owning ancestors.

Dr. Frank Enstine on November 5, 2013 at 2:50 PM

Here’s a thought – when all the doctors are federal employees… no more malpractice lawsuits.
I’d love to see the look on all the ambulance-chasing lawyers’ faces then…

Marcola on November 5, 2013 at 2:51 PM

It isn’t just Medicaid (and Medicare, whose reimbursements are also too low and cause most primary care doctors to limit the number of Medicare patients they will see), with the attendant entitlement attitude and schedule-busting (the “free” patients feel free to break appointments and/or waltz in three hours late expecting to be seen anyway), the overall level of paperwork and regulations for even regular insurance has grown into a compliance nightmare for many. Doctors have to operate an accounting and compliance and collection operation far behind what a simple family practice should be.

Why do that for the lowest net income in the field? Specialize! An old friend was a brilliant med student, but he went into dermatology instead of family practice. More money, regular 9-5 hours, no emergencies, no weekends “on call.”

Of course, the more government meddles, the fewer will see any point to eight years of school and an internship. Why not just be lawyer and sue doctors instead? The government won’t allow your income to be restricted then.

Adjoran on November 5, 2013 at 2:54 PM

Most people don’t want to risk everything in their life unless their life depended on having to do so.

Dr. Frank Enstine on November 5, 2013 at 2:42 PM

Patrick Henry’s life didn’t depend on defying King George. Just sayin.

Bat Chain Puller on November 5, 2013 at 2:57 PM

Patrick Henry’s life didn’t depend on defying King George. Just sayin.

Bat Chain Puller on November 5, 2013 at 2:57 PM

Was Patrick Henry a wealthy landowner? I don’t know. I’m not. So here I sit (and it looks like you do too) because by my calculus, I can’t effect enough change on my own to put my family at risk.

freedomfirst on November 5, 2013 at 3:09 PM

Our family doctor quit the end of October. He’s in his late 50′s. When we got the letter notifying us that he was leaving, my husband said it wasn’t a surprise – at his last check-up our doctor seemed frustrated by the bureaucracy. There are other doctors in the clinic we can see, but none as experienced.

My mother has a friend whose daughter is a chiropractor. She’s overwhelmed by the paperwork and ready to retire early.

We’re going to lose a lot of good doctors, and how long can we keep counting on third world countries to send us their best and brightest?

NavyMom on November 5, 2013 at 3:19 PM

Using a combination of rare herbs from Asia and Science™, this medicine, previously only available to a wealthy few, is now available to everyone for the astonishing price of $29.95 a bottle.

Axe on November 5, 2013 at 2:07 PM

So that’s what they were drinking when they passed this law.

de rigueur on November 5, 2013 at 3:44 PM

For the past quarter-century, the American Medical Association and other industry groups have predicted a glut of doctors and worked to limit the number of new physicians. In 1994, the Journal of the American Medical Association predicted a surplus of 165,000 doctors by 2000.

“It didn’t happen,” says Harvard University medical professor David Blumenthal, author of a New England Journal of Medicine article on the doctor supply. “Physicians aren’t driving taxis. In fact, we’re all gainfully employed, earning good incomes, and new physicians are getting two, three or four job offers.”

Seems like a man-made disaster, like climate change./

Fallon on November 5, 2013 at 3:46 PM

I am doing everything I can to talk my son out of trying to go to medical school. Wish he would consider veterinary medicine or dentistry or even research in a lab, anything but medical school. It is just not worth the cost in terms of educational expense, time, family sacrifice etc.

txmomof6 on November 5, 2013 at 3:50 PM

We’re going to lose a lot of good doctors, and how long can we keep counting on third world countries to send us their best and brightest?

NavyMom on November 5, 2013 at 3:19 PM

When the US has been dragged to their level, or more likely lower, then they will quit coming. We will be left only with the most desperate to get away from what they suffer at home and brave the uncertainty of coming here. I doubt that’s very far in the future.

Quartermaster on November 5, 2013 at 3:54 PM

That’s what PAs are for.

Some day, you’ll be treated by high school dropouts who “earned” their GED who’s working for minimum wage and will diagnose you with an app on their smartphones…in between texts to their boyfriend or girlfriend.

Oh, and you’ll be charged top dollar, too.

The only reason to even bother will be because you won’t be able to buy that $50 bottle of 25 tablets of Ibuprofen without having first gone through the proper Obamacare channels and obtained a prescription.

Dr. ZhivBlago on November 5, 2013 at 4:08 PM

You know what would really help?

Legalizing 30 million new medicaid entrants. That will clear things right up.

1+1=POTATO

jukin3 on November 5, 2013 at 1:57 PM

Does that mean free french fries for everybody…cause I’m cool with that – Obama voter

workingclass artist on November 5, 2013 at 4:09 PM

There’ll be enough “Dr. Nick Rivieras” out there, to fill the void.

listens2glenn on November 5, 2013 at 4:09 PM

For starters: DISOBEY.

I’m with Schadenfreude.

Bat Chain Puller on November 5, 2013 at 2:05 PM

Cheers!

I will not comply because I am a free citizen of the United States, not a subject of its government. I consider non-compliance with this monstrosity and the tens of thousands of pages of regulations that are to be enforced by an unelected bureaucracy, and that have left a gigantic carbon footprint on our environment and the United States Constitution, a duty.

Non-compliance is my executive order
, and that order reads in part that I do not recognize any government’s claim on my action or inaction in the marketplace, nor upon any personal information I am unwilling to divulge.

Schadenfreude on November 5, 2013 at 4:41 PM

txmomof6 on November 5, 2013 at 3:50 PM

He can always start a concierge practice or have a clinic in Costa Rica for surgeries denied by O-care. Med school is still worth it if you think out of the box.

PattyJ on November 5, 2013 at 4:41 PM

gwelf on November 5, 2013 at 1:36 PM

That is a good question. If we have a doctor shortage, why would doctors need to remove healthy tonsils and feet to make a living? Only with a progressive left viewpoint would that kind of claim be taken seriously.

KW64 on November 5, 2013 at 4:45 PM

We’re going to lose a lot of good doctors, and how long can we keep counting on third world countries to send us their best and brightest?

NavyMom on November 5, 2013 at 3:19 PM

What makes you think we get their best and brightest?

dentarthurdent on November 5, 2013 at 4:49 PM

This is so depressing. My father was an anesthesiologist and practiced from 1945 to 1986. I practically grew up in a hospital.

My father died in 2009, just before Obamacare passed. I miss him a lot, but I am glad he is not here to watch this happen to his beloved profession.

rockmom on November 5, 2013 at 4:51 PM

Now, who’s most likely to keep to fewer and lower risk sexual partners? Who’s most likely to drink, smoke, or use drugs? Who eats packaged convenience food or fast food every day?

OTOH, who can afford healthy food and take time to work out? Who lives in safer neighborhoods where there is a lower incidence of violence?

Just another way this hits the Dem’s own constituents harder….not that they’ll see it.

ElectricPhase on November 5, 2013 at 1:41 PM

And who will they complain to? Nobody. Meanwhile, Obama’s PR machine will find the handful of poor people who will cry on camera because they finally have health care thanks to Obama.

rockmom on November 5, 2013 at 4:56 PM

I don’t know why we as a free people continue to just accept what the government dictates. There are still ways to stop this. They are not easy and could get real ugly but just how much more crap will the people take before it does get ugly

bgibbs1000

You answered your own question. And to answer your other question, it will take a lot. America wasn’t even motivated enough to send Obama packing in 2012.

xblade on November 5, 2013 at 5:10 PM

Doctors limit the number of Doctors there are. Can’t have them as common as auto mechanics. Where is the status, the money? Rarity makes more money.

BL@KBIRD on November 5, 2013 at 1:36 PM

Oh yes, it is as easy to become a doctor as it is to become an auto mechanic, why, ANYONE can do it!

And if you think the money is worth the hassle that practicing medicine has become, you are an imbecile.

Sorry to be so sarcastic.

2L8 on November 5, 2013 at 5:11 PM

Well, we’re short one more doctor.
My friend, a doc about whom I’ve written on here before, is hanging up the stethoscope.
He informed few close acquaintances today that his last day is November 21st.

He gave me a book today that he said was a somewhat prized possession. It’s Without Remorse by Tom Clancy. He said that it was given to him by a friend and colleague, Dave, in 1995. Inscribed inside the cover it says, “To a real life John Kelly. Until we meet again. Dave.”
I was aware of that book, but never read it myself. But I will now. I am mourning the “loss” of the old doc. He won’t have a clue what to do with himself without work.

I predict that he’ll be dead within a year.

justltl on November 5, 2013 at 6:20 PM

Of course, primary care physicians are the gate-keepers who are responsible for referring patients to specialists if needed. They also, as the name implies, provide primary care to their patients. No primary care doctor, no primary care and certainly no referrals to specialists.

And no primary care. Or referrals to specialists.

righty45 on November 5, 2013 at 6:53 PM

I’m going to share a story that’s an intriguing counter-point, not because I think anything like this is common or likely to happen under Obamacare, but just because it’s unique, to my knowledge.

Our pediatrician, an excellent doctor and always very good with the kids, closed his practice in the 1990s and went to work in a local government-run clinic. He had often complained that other doctors in town didn’t take their “fair share” (his words) of Medicare and Medicaid patients, and found great satisfaction in treating the people who attended the clinic.

He also enjoyed having regular hours and no week-end or emergency calls, which should tell you something about the kind of clinics run by the government.

AesopFan on November 5, 2013 at 9:48 PM

computers do most of the diagnosing based on tests now?

We’re not even close to that.

RightKlik on November 5, 2013 at 9:58 PM

Here’s a twist I’ve never seen reported.

A member of my family is a primary physician. He’s 68, but he’s not ready to retire. He would like to reduce his patient load and work part time.

BUT…his malpractice insurance is well north of $100,000 a year, regardless of whether he works full- or part-time. There’s no way part-time can cover that.

Thus he will retire completely. And the community will lose one more doctor at a critical time.

jeanneb on November 6, 2013 at 9:25 AM