"The resulting findings show the possibility of significantly decreased access for Americans in the years ahead, as many doctors are forced to reduce the number of patients they see or quit the practice of medicine outright. "
Uh-oh. Probably not a good time to enact measures that would boost health care consumers.
“At a time when the new Administration and new Congress are talking about ways to expand access to healthcare, the harsh reality is that there might not be enough doctors to handle the increased number of people who might want to see them if they get health insurance,” said Walker Ray, MD, Vice President, The Physicians’ Foundation. “It’s as if we’re talking about expanding access to higher education without having enough professors to handle the influx of students. It’s basic supply and demand.”
Of course, we've repeatedly written here at RCC about the shockingly long wait times to access health providers found in countries with single-payer or socialized health care systems. Looks like these DMV-type lines may be coming to the U.S. if we get the major "change" in health care desired by the powers that be.
Most interesting, however, are responses given by doctors as to why they have become so frustrated with the profession.
"Tens of thousands of primary care doctors face the same problems as millions of ordinary citizens: frustrations in dealing with HMOs and government red tape,” said Sandra Johnson, Board Member, The Physicians’ Foundation.
"Declining reimbursement" rated highest on list of issues physicians identify as impediments to the delivery of patient care in their practices, followed by "demands on physician time"
82% said their practices would be "unsustainable" if proposed cuts to Medicare reimbursement were made
"reimbursement issues" and "managed care issues" rated the highest on the list of issues physicians find
unsatisfying about medicine"
So, let's saddle doctors with more government red tape, attempt to "control costs" by holding reimbursements down, develop tighter "managed care" guidelines, and impose HMO-style restrictions on patient options (all things that will result from the current "reform" plans being proposed). Sounds like a great recipe to hasten an oncoming doctor shortage. But we'll have the left's beloved "universal access"!
Never mind if there will be any doctors left to access.