Pip Pip and Cheerio!
July 2009, MDOD
Within the past few weeks I have been able to speak with chairs of various academic medicine departments. I have done this under the cover story of "I am working on an article" (true), or "I am working on a book and would like your input" (sorta true). The responses I have received are repetitive, infantile, and quite scary.
The number one reason that academicians WANT universal health care is to put some teeth behind RATIONING. They all believe that extraordinary care at the extremes of life will collapse the system. For instance, one particular academician I talked to wants to do away with dialysis for folks with certain criteria (having to do with her ideas about of 'quality of life'). These criteria will be decided by committees (because all the best things in life have come from committees), so no one person will be to blame.
Now this is quite amazing to me. First of all, academics have sat on their hands (and cheered) while regulations have tied private corporations' hands to the extent that their ability to perform procedures such as dialysis is severely limited. The mounds of paperwork required to open a clinic were scary enough to keep me from doing it (more power to you 'Cat).
Also, academic physicians all have a a little help with their workload and it comes with the names tenure, medical students, interns, and residents. This is a kind way of saying they have no freaking clue about private practice, they believe it is beneath them, most have never worked outside the academy (because once you do it's hard to get back in the club), and yet they want to make policy that forbids or severely limits private practice. How do you like your power Doctor? Absolutely? I thought as much. Pussies. Sell-outs. Turncoats.
I am sick of the AMA and ACEP.
ACEP sent out a blitheringly idiotic email today asking us to 'pass it on' so that emergency physicians can be helped by the big pile of money building in Washington. Screw you ACEP. Screw you AMA. Count me out.
Also, the academics have been behind the self-flagellatory demonization of drug companies. I understand that junkets to the Caribbean for docs may be a bad idea, but now the drug companies are prohibited, in large degree, from giving out drug samples and even from giving out pens.
As it turns out I am particularly susceptible to the free pens. If I get one that says "Rocephin" on it that's all I will prescribe. Even for erectile dysfunction. Until the pen peters-out.
"Hey doc, my weenie don't work... ain't this Rocephin stuff for infection?"
"Sir, you know your medicine! But look at this cool pen I got!"
The academics want the government to be the bad guy behind letting granny die from her chronic illness which is all I need to confirm my suspicion that they are COWARDS of the worst variety.