Monday, May 16, 2011

Will the over crowded ERs generated by Obama care reflect social justice

As the facts continue to flow out of various analyses of Obamacare and we learn that it will not keep the nation from "going bankrupt"and (shockingly) it will actually cost money and that various elements of it have to be postponed or exemptions for certain provisions have to manufactured to avoid voter push back in 20122, advocates are running out of justifications and may have to fall back on their claim of furtherance of social justice.

Some Democratic Senators and several spokesmen for medical organizations risked shoulder injury so exuberant were their efforts at self congratulation when the bill was signed into law.To be able to discern what the results would be in a bill so long, dense and ambiguous regarding details would require analytic ability not yet achieved by any creature who evolved on this earth.In fact, the details of the bill had not yet been written as the particulars were in numerous instances delegated to government entities for rule making some of which were yet to be formed.

Down the road there will be a situation in which this justice will be quite visible.That will play out in the emergency rooms across the country. The rich and the poor alike, those with insurance cards and those without will wait together as increasingly overworked and overstressed ER docs ( and their physician extenders) try and cope with the infusion of 30 plus million more insurance card holders into the health care system. Everyone waiting together to be screened by the NP or PA or as things evoke a NP assistant will give a lovely portrait of the wisdom of the central plan for [almost] everyone having nominal access to medical care but operationally finding little of it.

Social justice typically means redistribution and accordingly to CMS czar Dr. Donald Berwick good medicine must mean redistribution . Easier access to health care will be redistributed and diluted so that everyone gets to wait and wait and everyone's quality of care goes south.

For those of us who hope that having a retainer doc will help, and I think it will, here is a sobering thought and something else to worry about. With more vertical integration of medical care and the latest acclaimed saviors of medicine (the ACOs) becoming prevalent and perhaps dominant, will independent retainer docs even be allowed to admit and treat patients in a hospital or will her patients also end up in the increasingly long lines in the ERAs and the retainer physician unable do anything about it.Is there really anyway to escape from the clutches of Obamacare? Will it all be up to Justice Kennedy? Will it even be possible (i.e. legal) for someone to purchase health care outside of the centrally planned system? If you have not worried about that issue before I suggest you visit this and other commentaries by DrRich.

Here is a commentary from NPR on what ER docs think will happen when millions ( about 34 million) of new folks get an insurance card to show the clerk in the ER. Let us see-increased demand and no significant increase in supply combined with the already in place price controls in Medicare just might mean shortages , long lines, and decreased quality of care.You think.

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