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Yesterday, I went in for my yearly physical and got a flu shot.  Toward the end the doc asked, "If I have any further questions?"

Immediately what popped in my noggin and came out of my mouth with acute interest was 'What is your opinion on Obama's Healthcare reform?'

Yeah maybe I should be referred to a head shrink, but I couldn't help it being the political/news junkie I am.

His response was (paraprhasing, didn't have a recorder or pen and note while in boxers):

The health care reform didn't go far enough.  Don't tell any of my doctor friends but we should have single payer healthcare.  The system is still profit incentive driven and leaves too many out

Then he went further and touched on other topics:

Me: What about electronic records?

Yes it modernizes but doesn't reduce errors or duplications, might increase them.  Remember, its an input error not a writing.  Also, what kind of patient to doctor relationship can you foster if I'm talking to you (doc sits down) and start typing and looking down at my laptop.  Also it cost the practice 100k for something I don't need because I write everything out

Doc: Healthcare reform needed tort reform

I have been sued once and ever since I changed my methods - not against the safety of patients, just more duplications and now view patients in a different light.

On President Obama

The Republicans do not want our country to progress, they want to obstruct.  He inherited over trillion of dollars in debt, the worse economy since Great Depression, and two world wars and they want to sh*t all over him.  If Ben Bernake says this is the right way to get out of here, you know he wrote his thesis on Great Depression economy, then we should follow the adviser's plan.

With that the conversation came to an end.  He had more patients to attend.  I shook his hand, smiled, said 'thanks', and walked out of the office beaming.

Have you had conversations with your doctor, nurse, caregiver about healthcare in our nation? Share your comments below, I am sure we are all intrigued to know!

Originally posted to optimusprime on Sat Sep 11, 2010 at 05:05 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (10+ / 0-)

    When we got into office, the thing that surprised me most was to find that things were just as bad as we'd been saying they were. -JFK

    by optimusprime on Sat Sep 11, 2010 at 05:05:25 AM PDT

    •  Oh, I had SEVERAL doctors this year :) (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Sylv, DaleA, Terra Mystica
      1. was fine with it.
      1. contemplated closing his practice but that was before the medicare reimbursement fix.
      1. was rather nonplussed on recognizing I was for it but did not want to say anything specific
      1. made comments that clearly were strong on the Hippocratic Oath - if it helped get more people life-saving quality care, rock on
      1. would be a super success in any venue and truly did not care, the more the merrier
  •  Doc said it was a good start (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Sylv, Tulips

    said something needed to be done.

  •  My cardiologist (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DaleA, guinea

    while she is a talented physician and her practice has saved my life more than once ... is a hopeless, ignorant teabagger.

    We can't talk politics when I'm in her office, ESPECIALLY health care reform.  She'll cut my Plavix off and stand over me waving goodbye as I suffocate in a myocardio infarctive seizure.

    Write In: Alan Grayson

    by Detroit Mark on Sat Sep 11, 2010 at 05:15:32 AM PDT

  •  My doctor and my insurance agent (7+ / 0-)

    I buy my own insurance and I've asked both my doctor and my insurance agent what they think of it.  Both commented on the regulation that required all insurance plans to cover preventive care.  The agent said that it makes it an easier decision to purchase a high deductible, low cost plan because these plans now include 100% coverage for preventive care.  So even if your deductible is high, a woman can still go for a pap smear, mammogram, and annual physical at 100% coverage and a man can get an annual physical and PSA test at 100% coverage.  

  •  I actually just asked my doctor that same (10+ / 0-)

    question not two weeks ago and she said she didn't believe it went far enough.

    She told me that her father is French and she is very familiar with the French healthcare system.

    She said the way our health care system is managed is a travesty and the new legislation was the equivalent to me coming in with blood spurting out of an artery and her slapping a band-aid on it and then telling me it was the best I could expect under the circumstances even though we both knew she could of done more.

    She was visibly angry while speaking of it. Like there was no doubt in my mind the entire issue of our national health care system really pisses her off.


    "It is through disobedience that progress has been made, through disobedience and through rebellion." Oscar Wilde, 1891

    by MichiganGirl on Sat Sep 11, 2010 at 05:36:26 AM PDT

  •  Against Against Against Tea Tea Tea (0+ / 0-)

    Every one's an owner/investor in commercial health. Can't find one who isn't.

    Visiting a doc is like dealing with a cop on the street, I just bend over and take whatever they dish out. I do like the old European folk music I grew up with teaches, don't fuck with the nobility.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Sat Sep 11, 2010 at 05:44:39 AM PDT

  •  you're lucky (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DaleA, Terra Mystica, ahumbleopinion

    My doctors' office had flyers out last summer telling seniors if HCR passed, they'd lose their Medicare.  The senior partner (not my doctor), wore a McCain/Palin button during the 2008 campaign, and drives a Ferrari with a bumper sticker that looks like the Obama logo, except it says "BOHICA."  Charming guy.

    I work for a non-profit hospital system, and the execs there, while mostly Republican, are well aware that health care does not respond to market forces. Many have expressed a desire for the simplicity of single-payer, versus the nightmare of public and private programs, plus the ever-increasing number of uninsured patients, many of whom we treat for free.

    There is no snooze button on a cat who wants breakfast.

    by puzzled on Sat Sep 11, 2010 at 05:45:42 AM PDT

  •  My daughter is a physician in Chicago. She was (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Oh Mary Oh

    a part of the group of "Doctors for Obama."  She feels that her university hospital would benefit from single payer for all indigent patients.   However, she feels that the indigent patient gets very good care in an academic facility; but the community hospitals run up the government tab by subjecting patients to needless lab and other test for their margin of profit.  

  •  My HMO is relatively progressive and innovative (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Atul Gawande told me so :) They haven't bothered me about HCR and I'm happy about that.

    The most impressive thing about man [...] is the fact that he has invented the concept of that which does not exist--Glenn Gould

    by Rich in PA on Sat Sep 11, 2010 at 06:03:41 AM PDT

  •  My doctor, a 60-something, internist, in (6+ / 0-)

    Scarsdale, NY, became politicized over the course of the health care reform debate.  He wrote long, long letters to Obama, Schumer, and anyone else he could think might have some real influence in the debate. He wants to talk politics now every time I see him.

    He is passionate about Medicare abuse and oversees the use of Medicare in his now fairly large clinic practice. He believes that Obama is serious about doing something about overuse of Medicare and he's happy about that.

    In general, however, he, too, thinks reform didn't go anywhere near far enough. Among other things, he thinks cosmetic surgery (and those who can afford it) should be heavily taxed so that there is money for people who actually need health care. He is currently distressed about our health care system and feels terribly discouraged by the outcome of all that debate. The last time I saw him (just two weeks ago), he asked me for the name of that "leftist blog" I read that seems to keep me energized for the fight.

    So, if you're reading this, Doc, have a great day.

    We don't differentiate between them and us. It's just us. -- Barack Obama

    by Alice Olson on Sat Sep 11, 2010 at 06:39:10 AM PDT

  •  My family pediatrician is (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Terra Mystica, guinea
    looking to moving her practice out of the USA because of the HCR bill.. it is killing her business becaude of the dramatic jump in private healthcare rates and insurance companies not paying out as they should.

    She is a proponent of equalizing payment between private and government health insurance (medicaid vs private insurance billing).

    Where I live is the same story.., Doctors are planning on moving their practices out of the US because of HCR.

    My pedistriciasn stated she doesn't have a problem with Medicaid payments.. she gets 185% above her office's actual costs, but she has to charge private health insurance 450% above sactual cost of care because that is what it takes to get the same rate of pay as when she bills medicaid.

    However her billing 450% above actual cost is what is driving up health insurance costs.

    It is a vicious cycle.. Insurance companies not paying out as they should.. in order to get equal payment of Medicaid / medicare, she has to bill 350% more to private as compared to Medicaid / medicare.

    HCR should have dealt with insurance comapny payouts to billing and restricted hospitals and clinics to only be able to charge the same amount to private as it does to medicaid/merdicare.

    Our pediatrician is extremely upset about HCR and how it was handeled. She hates the fact that Private health insurance is compulsory as all it does is enforce current insurance company practices and makes them a ton of money.

    I live in a small town in Louisiana.. if our pediatrician leaves, I will then have to drive over 60 miles to get to another pediatrician.

    Yep.. our HCR at work.. makes life better doesn't it. especially without public option, single payer, and including compulsory language where an opt out taxes you, and not deaaliung with the heart of the problem, the actual billing and payment process of hospitals, clkinics, private doctors and health insurance companies.

    Yep.. Dr. Carreon, the pediatrician of my 3 kids will be leaving when the meat of the current HCR starts taking effect in order to preserve her income in a more health care friendly environment.

    So the diarist DR may like HCR.. My family physician, my pediatrician, my wife's OB/GYN, and even my kids dentist is looking at other countries that are more Health Care friendly (also these same Physicians dont believe in socialized medicine as that leads to massive patient backlogs and outdated technology / medical practive advancement).

  •  My personal physician (4+ / 0-)

    a.k.a. my hubby* is a member of PNHP, and is planning to go to a training with them to do public speaking and advocacy for single payer. I'm kinda proud of him. :D

    *Yes, I know my spouse can't really be my doc officially, and I have one who I'm not related to. That doesn't stop him from nagging me to take my vitamins, etc.

    Thanks for helping me get to the GRAMMYs! :)

    by virgomusic on Sat Sep 11, 2010 at 07:08:04 AM PDT

  •  Doctor? (6+ / 0-)

    What doctor?

    "Too big to fail" is not too big to jail.

    by Angela Quattrano on Sat Sep 11, 2010 at 07:10:49 AM PDT

  •  See, that's the thing. (4+ / 0-)

    You have to HAVE a doctor or insurance or a job or other way to get money in order for this bill to really make one bit of difference in your life.

    I haven't been to a doctor in more than five years because I'm unemployed and broke.

    I thought health care "reform" was supposed to ensure that I could go.

    Ask me again in 2014. If I live that long.

    "The difference between the right word and the almost-right word is like the difference between lightning and the lightning bug." -- Mark Twain

    by Brooke In Seattle on Sat Sep 11, 2010 at 07:15:08 AM PDT

  •  Over 70% of doctors favored the public option (6+ / 0-)

    Here's the story from NPR, but my recollection was that there was consistently high support for a public option, if not single payer, amongst physicians in the 2009 campaign for health care reform.
    Except you really wouldn't know it from the way the media covered the story. It didn't fit the tea party/conservative narrative, or the increasingly out of touch polling.
    I still think Obama made a huge strategic mistake in taking off the table the option of Medicare for all (aka single payer) - and then negotiating down to the public option. The result is an enormous amount of democratic political capital expended (particularly in the house - kudos to Nancy Pelosi) - and nothing but a lousy t-shirt of legislation to try and "defend" in November.

  •  "I don't know" what will work (3+ / 0-)

    My wife's cousin is chairman of the board of a good sized regional nonprofit hospital and clinic chain.  He is very conservative and was bemoaning Obamacare one day while we were chatting.  He told of hiring the best experts in the new health care law to give talks on the subject, and all the areas of the law that no one yet knows any of the details.  They cannot plan for it.

    Next he related several failures of private health insurance, including his own.

    I asked, "As you just described, private health insurance isn't getting the job done.  What will work?"

    He just looked down, shook his head, and said, "I don't know."

    Me, I'd like Medicare-done-right-for-all.

  •  My doctor's opinion is AFT. (0+ / 0-)

    Although, since she is a polite lady, she didn't actually phrase it that way.

    I work at the state medical school and know a lot of doctors - only one of them isn't wildly in favor, and most of them think it didn't go far enough.

  •  My bone doc laughed because all his (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Oh Mary Oh

    older patients were dashing in and demanding hip and knee replacements before Obamacare was enacted.  They were all Medicare patients, which shows how effective the right's scare tactics were.  As for the doctor's own concerns, he said he wasn't worried at all about it.  He said if things started to go awry that doctors here would go on strike just as they did in Canada.  Sounds unionlike, doesn't it.  It's always good to have faith in the value of one's work and the pride of your profession.

    •  Doctors can't go on strike in America (0+ / 0-)

      Most doctors are considered self-employed (even if they work in a hospital, they bill separately), it would violate antitrust laws for doctors to collude together and strike.  

      Nurses can and do strike as they are directly employed by the hospital.

  •  The last time I saw my doctor, (0+ / 0-)

    about ten years ago, he was in favor of a government-funded health care system.

  •  mine called it "a national health plan" (0+ / 0-)

    and ranted for a minute about preserving entrepreneurship.

    She's an otherwise intelligent and compassionate person, but to be honest, I'm glad I just moved and will get to find a new doctor.

  •  My wife's Ob-gyn was anxious to see the (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    law fully implemneted.  He thinks it will improve care and save costs when fully implemented, but right now it is a transitional period so it is a challenge to manage.  My company also hosted a forum on the health care law and our diverse panel alla greed that it will achieve the cost reductions that are projected by the CBO.  The incentives to move towards standardized electronic records alone will significantly reduce costs and improve care.

    My advice to the Obama Administration would be to accelerate the law's implementation.  The only people who want to slow this train down are politicians who are more interested in covering their backsides.  The people, from the patients to providers to companies that are in a position to provide valuable cost-saving services, crave the individual elements of the package.

    Alternative rock with something to say:

    by khyber900 on Sat Sep 11, 2010 at 09:33:44 AM PDT

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