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Jun-23-2009 05:34printcomments

Rich Doctors: Rich Lawyers and Richer Insurance Executives

What happened? Now Doctors actually work FOR medical insurance companies. They tell us in no uncertain terms what we can and better NOT do – THEY WITHHOLD PAYMENTS!

(MOLALLA, Ore.) - The Lawyers and Insurers have destroyed the best medical system in the world. How do I know? Been there, done that, seen that.

I wanted to be a doctor since I was a child. I was a golf caddy and I knew dozens of rich doctors and rich lawyers. The Insurance executives were still in the closet except that the doctors and lawyers knew who they were and how much loot they were dragging home.

There are about 1300 medical insurance companies – very profitable – and most of their upper level drag home more money than very many doctors.

Plaintiff lawyers are a very rich class of their own. One multi-million dollar settlement (these have become very common) and the lawyer can quit and become a world traveler.

What happened? Now Doctors actually work FOR medical insurance companies. They tell us in no uncertain terms what we can and better NOT do – THEY WITHHOLD PAYMENTS! You have read all about this – withholding life-saving surgery. WHY? It costs THEIR MONEY! THEIR MONEY???

Back in the OLD DAYS patients were told to make a list of their medical problems and discuss ALL of them at an office call. NO MORE. Doctors will only treat one condition per office call at a time. They make more of the insurance companies money that way – payback time!

The Medical Malpractice Insurers are another awful case. A friend of mine, a heart surgeon, had his malpractice insurance premium kicked-up to $275 thousand dollars per year. He doesn’t do heart surgery in the U.S. anymore. With the conniving of malpractice lawyers and malpractice insurance executives they can financially and professionally ruin ANY doctor.

The name of the game for doctors is now ultra defensive medicine, make as much money as possible as fast as possible on one patient, one problem at a time and then “get out of Dodge” – as soon as possible. The best trained, most experienced doctors are quitting as soon as financially possible.

The Nurse Practitioners and Physician Assistants are taking over patient care. Most medical school classes now have more females than males. The previous males are going to Law Schools – more money, no night calls or going into the insurance business where the real money is and more golf days are possible.

ALL patients should be able to have the same insurance as Federal Employees. If it’s good enough for them it should be good enough for the rest of us.



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Martin June 24, 2009 6:37 pm (Pacific time)

There are many people out there who have gone on record that they are alive today, or one of their loved ones, because they were able to get a second opinion. For example just ask any service-connected veteran, who may not have the funds, how they will be able to afford/get a second medical opinion. This is a very serious matter, there are some doctors out there who are just out of their depth in some situations, and I can testify that I got a second opinion about a surgery the VA told me I needed. I found that physical therapy was a better option and I appealed with the help of DAV and an ombudsman and got my physical therapy paid for and I made a full recovery (I did have to pay for the second opinion, but I had the funds, many do not). The surgery would have required cutting around nerve tissue that could have had serious ramifications, plus it was a surgery that was based more on an exploratory process for they wern't sure of their diagnosis. This happens in the private medical world endless times, so yeah, what about a national health plan that provides an option for "timely" second, even subsquent opinions? It will not happen because that's not how government works, and that's why I used my VA example.

Henry Ruark June 24, 2009 12:21 pm (Pacific time)

  That 50% bit applies to any group evaluated, friend M., including commenteers here.
  SO where do you think yours so uninformed re healthcare realities will end up ?
  Try getting second opinion now from your vaunted second supplier; but make sure you put in some solid provisions for survival during the wait, and then may find it and yourself classified as "preexisting condition" --with no pretense of costing via comparative-payment to bidder.
  IF given choice between a decision by Medicare provider and insurance guru, which will you take ?? Medicare runs at 2-5% management costs vs 10-15 or more from private-profit providers, plus cut for the profit on top of that.
  See upcoming Op Ed...

Scott June 24, 2009 2:25 pm (Pacific time)

Martin is correct. I do feel there is a dire need for health care reform, but i'm afraid this administration will go about gaining public support in the wrong way and with extreme intentions. I foresee them selling it to the public much like the stimulus package, with the President on television during prime time warning the end of the USA as we know it if we don't go heavily into debt now - and where has that got us? Like Mr. Emanuel said.. something like "never waste a crisis".

Martin June 24, 2009 11:55 am (Pacific time)

Scott sounds like you get your health care from the Veterans Administration? If so, have you noticed a steady decline in the quality of service? I sure have. In fact I bought a major medical plan so I have a choice if a serious medical event happens so I can get a second opinion, and afford the potential procedure. I don't think people realize that under a national health policy it will be unlikely that you can get a second opinion, and if you can, how long would it take to get a second opinion appointment? In other words, you may very well be stuck with the MD you got, and 50% of all MD's graduated at the bottom half of their medical school.

Scott June 24, 2009 7:53 am (Pacific time)

If BO gets his way all the docs and nurses will work for the gov't... deciding your healthcare fate using a cost-benefit ratio matrix. btw I have "govt provided" healthcare, and you'd BETTER BELIEVE THAT IT GOES TO THE LOWEST BIDDER. That's spoken from nearly 20 years of experience.

Henry Ruark June 23, 2009 11:50 am (Pacific time)

To all: Best parts of this intriging report are: "...Been there, done that, seen that" in lead; and the ending slogan: "Go Obama, Go !". I can sympathize and synchronize with both...and many others will state the same extremely serious "see with own eyes" from their own life experiences, too. Thank you, Dr. L ! May your great reports continue to reign and reflect reality here for most serious readers.

M George June 23, 2009 8:08 am (Pacific time)

Great article!Only a few on the inside truly understand that this is going on.

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