A Shortage Of Doctors: Ya Don’t Say… And The Other Unintended Consequences Of Obamacare

Tuesday, April 13th, 2010

The Wall Street Journal shares this inevitable news:

The new federal health-care law has raised the stakes for hospitals and schools already scrambling to train more doctors.

Experts warn there won’t be enough doctors to treat the millions of people newly insured under the law. At current graduation and training rates, the nation could face a shortage of as many as 150,000 doctors in the next 15 years, according to the Association of American Medical Colleges.

That shortfall is predicted despite a push by teaching hospitals and medical schools to boost the number of U.S. doctors, which now totals about 954,000.

The greatest demand will be for primary-care physicians. These general practitioners, internists, family physicians and pediatricians will have a larger role under the new law, coordinating care for each patient.

The U.S. has 352,908 primary-care doctors now, and the college association estimates that 45,000 more will be needed by 2020. But the number of medical-school students entering family medicine fell more than a quarter between 2002 and 2007.

A shortage of primary-care and other physicians could mean more-limited access to health care and longer wait times for patients.

The whole point of health care reform was too feel better–not you, or your health–but liberal politicians.

It wasn’t to improve health care treatment.

It wasn’t to reduce costs.

It wasn’t even to get more people under care.

Wait, what? That’s right. More people will be insured, but patients will receive less care at more cost. It’s just logical. The new health care system creates a gatekeeper system that will eliminate individual choice and drive up costs. So, a person thinks something is wrong with his prostate–he goes directly to a proctologist. That saves 1. wait time 2. cost (no double doctor fees) and 3. diagnosis time.

But not now.

Oh no! Now, a patient must wait to get into an overburdened primary care physician, get a referral and then get into another physician. A patient will be dead by the time he gets diagnosed.

The inevitable response?

Cash-only doctors. Some doctors won’t accept this new insurance and work outside the system. So, people will pay into the health service, hate the waits and then, go pay cash for good care.

The rich will have good care while subsidizing everyone else. The middle class will be caught in a jam because the taxes will be so egregious they can’t afford anything, never mind a quick diagnosis. So they will be caught in government-mandated substandard care.

And the poor, who don’t pay into the system, will still misuse the system because they still won’t take care of themselves. And Medicare and Medicaid could have been expanded to help them as is.

But noooo. An overhaul had to happen. The government had to control health care.

If this diseased legislation doesn’t get revoked, America is going to go down the road of all disastrous socialized countries: chronic unemployment, disheartened and downwardly mobile middle class and an elite aristocracy for whom policy doesn’t matter.

In the liberal world that’s called utopia.

And by the way, a small board will decide what does and does not get covered under Obamacare. So, yes, death sentences will be handed down by the government. That too, is inevitable.