A Physicians’ Template for HealthCare Reform: An Eleven Point Plan

via AmericanDoctors4Truth

Revised Edition, September 1, 2015

There are those who say that ObamaCare is now the law of the land and citizens should accept it and proceed with compliance. However, the overt bribery with cloistered deliberations and the failure of Congress to read the bill before passage is an affront to every American citizen regardless of political persuasion. As we now begin to understand this takeover of one sixth of the private sector economy, we see a fundamental transformation of the relationship between the individual and the federal government. The profession of medicine has been politically commandeered to accomplish centralized power in bureaucrats who now have increasing potential to intercede in some of life’s most critical and intimate affairs. This has the potential to erode the personal dignity and worth of every individual and strip individuals of personal freedom in healthcare choices. Our healthcare system needed reform, not the further distortions to the system in the ACA.

These ideological considerations aside, many promises of ObamaCare have been shown to be false. Health insurance costs have already risen and individuals have lost their insurance, hospital access, and physicians with whom they were happy. Individuals now have an insurance card, but with the high deductibles and narrow networks they are unable to access care. Medicare, Medicaid, and the VA are existing examples of government medicine. Medicaid pays less than the cost of delivery of care for many services, and the VA scheduling delay scandal actually cost lives. The bureaucratic nightmare of compliance with Medicare mandates, not to mention the approaching ACA mandates, has prompted many physicians to restrict the number of these patients or opt out of participation completely.

Thirty-six states wisely rejected ObamaCare by not setting up state run exchanges. Of the fourteen that did, at least seven are now insolvent after over a billion dollars of federal tax dollars were spent to help set them up. ObamaCare has never been implemented. Rather, it has been changed by administrative or executive fiat at least thirty-five times. After the 2014 elections, there continues to be a window of opportunity for alternative solutions to fix our American healthcare system without destroying arguably the finest medical and surgical care in the world. Across the country physicians are joining forces to craft viable alternatives that fulfill the false promises of ObamaCare. Although the AMA has name recognition, it represents only about 12% of practicing physicians. In fact, the AMA supported ObamaCare because it has a monopoly on the coding books necessary for business with government insurers, an estimate $80 million a year revenue for them. Currently Docs4PatientCareFoundation, The American Association of Physicians and Surgeons, AmericanDoctors4Truth, The Physician’s Council for Healthcare Policy, and The National Coalition of Physicians for Healthcare Freedom, and United Physicians and Surgeons of America are leading activists in these endeavors. Most of the reform ideas share a common philosophy. Our system should be patient centered, physician guided, and free market driven leading to healthy competition, transparency, and free patient choice. Perhaps those in Congress and the presidential candidates who truly care about enduring reform will consider listening to the experts in healthcare, the boots-on-the-ground practicing physicians who take care of you and your family. The eleven points for reform are as follows:

  1. Get employers out of the health insurance business. Shift insurance purchase for the employee to defined contributions for healthcare purchases or to increased wages to place individuals in the driver’s seat selecting insurance options that fit their needs. Massive administrative costs for business would be saved and disruptions to existing physician relationships would be stopped. Insurance would be non-job specific, stable, and portable. The insurance industry would be forced to respond with a robust offering of individual policies that would form the risk pools. They would compete by virtue of their product, not contracts with third parties, i.e. employers or the federal government.
  2. Purchase of health insurance, health savings accounts, or cash payment for care should be with pre-tax dollars regardless of who makes the purchase.
  3. Once a robust individual market is established, liberate Medicare aged individuals by allowing them to opt out of Medicare without penalty. A defined contribution, like their social security check, would allow them to purchase insurance of their choosing like the rest of the population.  Retain Medicaid for the truly indigent or incapacitated of all ages.
  4. Medicaid would emerge as the only federal government health insurance program, except for the Military and the VA System. (Their reform is for a different discussion.) It could be also used as a stop-gap insurance for those between jobs who could not afford continuation of their insurance, as well as a “rider” for pre-existing disease added to conventional insurance for a specified time. States should receive block grants without mandates to decrease the perverse incentives to increase enrollment. This also promotes innovative ways to ensure access to quality care in cost effective ways.
  5. Return to indemnity insurance where there is shared risk for unanticipated medical or surgical expenses related to injury or illness. The notion that insurance is pre-paid routine healthcare cannot be fiscally sustained. Health Savings Accounts with a catastrophic insurance policy paid for with pre-tax dollars would transition to paying health care dollars, not insurance dollars. Many current insurance payments exceed the cost of routine care and a catastrophic policy. Patient controlled HSAs promote good stewardship of healthcare dollars.
  6. Encourage states to eliminate insurance coverage mandates, like acupuncture and message, to allow a cost effective catastrophic policy and HSA’s. Pre-existing could be covered with time-limited riders.
  7. Allow purchase and portability across state lines. States are the places for innovative healthcare solutions, not one size fits all central planning. Mistakes are more readily remedied as well.
  8. Total transparency across all health care entities is essential. No more third party contracts. There could be a state sponsored portal where hospitals, pharmacies, physicians, etc could post their individual fee schedules regardless of the insurance the individual carries. The insurance contract then becomes one between the patient and the insurance company. Insurance companies then could list what they will pay, not dictate what the physician can charge. This allows patients free access to whatever provider they chose. Cost shifting and horrendous administrative burdens would be eliminated. Hospitals would no longer have inflated “charge master” fees. Prices would fall as competitive markets emerge. We don’t walk into a grocery store and get charged different prices depending on what credit card we use and what deal that credit card has with the grocer.
  9. Fees and costs of all entities, like pharmaceuticals, surgery, devices, physician services, should reflect the cost of resources used and services rendered, not an inflated price upon which third party contracts base their “discounts” for individuals in their “network” nor the Medicare arbitrary price controls. This allows patients and physicians to make informed decisions regarding health care expenditures and choices, and helps to ensure adequate access to care.
  10. Encourage torte reform to save the estimated 30% cost of litigation avoidance for pain and suffering. Lost wages and disability compensation would still be recoverable.
  11. Allow charitable care delivered by the physician to be a tax deductible item with a yearly limit.

Jane Lindell Hughes, MD, FACS

Edited and Approved By:
AmericanDoctors4Truth

Co-Founders:
Kristen Story Held, MD
Jane Lindell Hughes, MD, FACS

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AAPSonline.org submits amicus brief to US Court to protect privacy of patient medical records.

Following the information that AAPS submitted an amicus brief to the United States Court of Appeals fifth circuit to block the federal government from accessing and releasing unauthorized patient medical records, independent physicians for patient independence sent the following email to the American Medical Association and the American Osteopathic Association today:
Perhaps the American Medical Association and The American Osteopathic Association can also take the lead on filing an amicus brief to restore the sacrosanct patient privacy of their medical records. Currently the government is gathering and freely sharing data without regard for individual patient privacy. Last month, the government agency that performs security checks was breached of 21 million government employees records. Need I say more?

Thirteen Steps to Save American Medicine – Time Is Short!

Via Dr. Parvez Dara:

  1. Time Is Short!
  2. Opt out CMS & MOC
  3. Simultaneously educate our patients
  4. Bring in like-minded business people and thinkers
  5. Go Concierge or similar FFS.
  6. Treat Indigent patients 10%
  7. Back to black bag, stethoscope doctoring with New Tools.
  8. Build a base that can rise up against the CMS empire when NPI numbers control prescriptions.
  9. Provide Care for 5%-7% of the population in each state (might mean 200-2000 like minded docs in each state) – start proselytizing.
  10. Forget the loonies in DC – they are lobbyist controlled embedded clowns – both sides
  11. Join forces with AAPS, D4PC & all other entities instead of fragmenting – power in numbers
  12. Real care with limited monetary gain in the short term will lead to long term loyalty – passion brings monetary rewards if passion is the driving force.
  13. As Judith says let’s formalize the process.

These Barons are not sitting idle but they are happy in their stupor for now. Use it to our advantage. Time for checking the peeling paint is over. Substance over form. New forces will gather to self-enrich from MACRA.. & time is short!

Revolutions are never easy. Get ready to take the hits!

How Practicing Physicians Would Restore Affordability, Promote Patient Choice, and Retain Quality in Health Care

CLICK HERE for PDF version of plan.

Prepared by the National Physician Coalition for Freedom in Medicine- March 25 & 26, 2015

IMG_4346Practicing physicians want patients to be able to access the highest quality care at the best value.  

  • Empower the patient to preserve the patient-physician relationship, allowing patients to choose their physicians and treatments.
  • Empower the patient to choose to pay directly for medical services without insurance penalties.
  • Encourage individual patient responsibility to reduce overall costs.
  • Empower patients by making competitively priced insurance available for all to purchase as protection against catastrophic loss.
  • Charity should be local and left to the communities and the people. 

To eliminate barriers to compassionate care, we, the practicing physicians of the United States, respectfully submit to Congress the following sound concepts and principles that we are certain will achieve the aforementioned ends;

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Ask your state legislature to oppose the FSMB Interstate Medical Licensing Compact

On September 14, 2014, the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) released its final version of the Interstate Medical Licensing Compact. Even though this 24-page document and the FSMB’s website promote the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact, the document claims “it does not necessarily reflect the views of the Federation of State Medical Boards, the Board of Directors of the Federation of State Medical Boards, or any state medical board or its members.”

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How to oppose MOC via your State Medical Society

Guest Post from Ken Ping-Chang Lee, MD

First identify the state society that has access to the state and federal government, such as the Governor, Speaker of the House and other legislators. Make sure you are a paid up member of that society and find your local county chapter if they have such ; then attend their next board meetings. Find physicians there that are 50 yrs of age or younger so they can identify the threat posed by ABMS /MOC; they will either totally hate it or are grandfathered , thus are nonchalant about MOC. Try to convince the local chapter to adopt a resolution against MOC. Learn to write a resolution and it would be good to copy what has been done by Florida’s FMA or other previous societies; this can be found on the excellent website “ChangeBoardRecert.com“.

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Calling Dr. Carson

This request is personal for Dr. Ben Carson. We spoke on one of your outstanding conference calls about a month ago. I am a practicing solo family physician and radio show host who spoke your exact sentiments about insurance competition, hospital competition, repealing Obamacare, and the restoration of individual rights. I too am a conservative/libertarian freedom fighter for patient and physician and citizen individual rights under the US Constitution.

Would you please take half hour out of your busy schedule to be interviewed on my radio show, link below? I have been working with RunBenRun.Org as well as the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons on getting the word out about your potential campaign. Perhaps you would speak on one of our conference calls, or at one of our conferences?

I thank you for bringing hope and a positive plan for the restoration of individual rights in our country and the esteem of its citizens and the world.

Best wishes for good health,
Craig M. Wax, DO
Family physician, Editorial Board of Medical Economics
Host of Your Health Matters
Rowan Radio 89.7 WGLS FM
http://wgls.rowan.edu/?feed=YOUR_HEALTH_MATTERS
Twitter @drcraigwax