This article from Investors Business Daily is absolutely stunning. The headline is itself startling:

45% Of Doctors Would Consider Quitting If Congress Passes Health Care Overhaul

Here’s why:

More than seven in 10 doctors, or 71%, the most lopsided response in the poll, answered “no” when asked if they believed “the government can cover 47 million more people and that it will cost less money and the quality of care will be better.”

This response is consistent with critics who complain that the administration and congressional Democrats have yet to explain how, even with the current number of physicians and nurses, they can cover more people and lower the cost at the same time.

The only way, the critics contend, is by rationing care, giving it to some and denying it to others. That cuts against another claim by plan supporters, that care would be better.

This poll alone should be enough to stop health care reform dead in its tracks. What shouldn’t be overlooked is that this isn’t an uninformed opinion. I’d be surprised if the doctors’ lobbyists haven’t read the different bills. I’d be surprised if the doctors haven’t been briefed on the various bills’ contents.

The question that I keep returning to is this: What thing or things in the bills would be so terrible that these doctors would retire. The only thing that I’ve come up with is that Obamacare would rely heavily on price controls. If that’s the case, then the flood of doctors retiring early makes sense.

The great concern is that, with increased mandates, lower pay and less freedom to practice, doctors could abandon medicine in droves, as the IBD/TIPP Poll suggests. Under the proposed medical overhaul, an additional 47 million people would have to be cared for, an 18% increase in patient loads, without an equivalent increase in doctors. The actual effect could be somewhat less because a significant share of the uninsured already get care.

Even so, the government vows to cut hundreds of billions of dollars from health care spending to pay for reform, which would encourage a flight from the profession.

Rather than figuring out new ways to provide health care at genuinely lower prices, government’s use of a sledgehammer approach tells me that they’re ill-equipped at dealing with the challenges we face. A couple weeks ago, Greta van Susteren sent a team of people to look at a collaborative care health care center in Appleton, WI, was producing high quality care at prices well below the national average. During an interview with Newt Gingrich, she mentioned the care center, prompting Mr. Gingrich to talk about another innovative health care center in Lacrosse, WI.

The reality is that these places wouldn’t have happened had government put a heavier mandate on what could and couldn’t be done. Government’s record on positive innovation in health care or anything else has been abysmal for at least half a century. Government has never identified the next FedEx, Microsoft or VitalMedix and they never will.

That’s why it’s important that we push government out of the health care industry. Yes, I know that government’s imprint on the health care industry is substantial. I’d assert that that’s what’s driving many of the problems in the health care industry.

I’d argue that it’s time to put a bill together that unleashes the best and brightest health care minds on solving the problems but there’s no need since Paul Ryan, Tom Coburn, Devin Nunes and Richard Burr co-sponsored the Patients’ Choice Act.

IBD’s polling is important because it exposes a fatal flaw in Obamacare. You can’t improve the U.S. health care system, you can’t avoid rationing, if your plan causes half the doctors to retire early rather than work in the ‘reformed’ health care industry.

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Cross-posted at California Conservative

4 Responses to “Doctors: Obamacare the Wrong Rx”

  • J. Ewing says:

    I have to worry that only 71% of the doctors, on whom we depend for their intelligence and knowledge for our very lives, can agree with the obvious logic. TANSTAAFL.

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