Tuesday, February 2, 2010

"Basic Medical Care Insurance Access"

"We are the only developed country that does not assure all of its citizens basic medical care insurance access – shame on us."

Or so says Dr. Healthcare: Right or Responsibility?" at The Health Care Blog. I hear and read similar statements every day. By-passing whether what we lack is "care" or "insurance" or "access," I'd like to restate the above from a different perspective.

"We are the only developed country that puts freedom and personal responsibility ahead of government coercion in the realm of basic medical care insurance access--shame on them."



Doug McGuff, MD said...


I am an emergency physician who is subject to EMTALA (an unfunded govt mandate that forces me to see all comers regardless of their intention to pay).

If the govt truly wanted to solve the healthcare coverage crisis, all they would have to do is offer physicians a tax credit equal to the standard medicare charges for any uncompensated care they provided.

If this were the case physicians would be lining up to provide indigent care up to the amount that equals their yearly gross income (essentially making their income tax free). However, this would never happen as it would force them to give up tax revenue and their power derived from trying to address this "crisis".

Doug McGuff

Beth said...


Thanks for commenting. I too am an emergency physician and quite familiar with EMTALA.
Interesting point about the tax credit. But of course, this whole push in Congress really isn't about improving health care or health care access. There are a myriad of ways to increase affordability which are not given serious consideration because they either decrease government revenue (as does your idea) or they decrease government control (as would reducing regulations, eliminating licensing and mandates, etc.)

Your book Body By Science looks intriguing. I plan to check it out.

Thanks again for stopping by and adding your thoughts.

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