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Doctor: 'It's time to defy health care mandates by bureaucrats'

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According to at least one noted California orthopedic surgeon, doctors are fed up with government and bureaucratic meddling in their profession. He stated, flatly, "It's time to defy health care mandates by bureaucrats..."

In what amounts to a physicians' declaration of civil disobedience, Dr. Daniel F. Craviotto wrote a piece for the Wall St. Journal in which he gives voice to what thousands of doctors are thinking and feeling -- that government bureaucrats do not understand the medical profession because they are not doctors, and thus, their mandates do not make sense. He further declares that most doctors are so fed up that they are ready to defy the mandates of government bureaucrats in order to give appropriate care to their patients.

As expected Craviotto joins a chorus of doctors to decry the fact that government forces physicians to accept the very same payment/reimbursement rate for various procedures that they received decades ago. A total knee replacement, for example, is reimbursed at the same rate as 1993 -- a decline of 68 percent in real dollars. And doctors have no control over the costs of providing these procedures.

What business could stay in business if it's income today is based on the very same amount it would make in 1993? A 68 percent decline would throw it into bankruptcy. And what if we mandated that government could not be funded at any higher rate than it was in 1993? At the very least deep cuts would ensue, and the vast majority of the bureaucrats who work for government would be out of work. Yet government expects doctors to be paid at the same rate as they were in 1993 for procedures for Medicare/Medicaid patients.

But this is not the only complaint Craviotto lodges against the government bureaucracy. The mandate that all patient records be entered electronically, using some of the most expensive software on the market, is another sticking point. He says that most of the questions on the electronic form are irrelevant and unnecessary. And thus, the time it takes to complete these forms takes precious time away from administering care to patients.

Craviotto has concluded that in order to correct this growing mammoth problem, doctors may have to decide to take themselves out of the system altogether. This would come with some pain, both for the physicians themselves and for some patients. For example, he suggests that doctors could refuse to accept insurance, period, and switch to a cash-only practice. He says they could refuse to accept Medicare. This would cut into the income of most physicians, but Craviotto says that the level of frustration is so high that they are ready to take these drastic measures. Some doctors already have.

The bottom line? Most physicians in America are reaching the point where they say, "Enough is enough!" And if the doctors refuse to participate in Obamacare and the Democrats' brave new world of socialism, who, then, will provide the healthcare that the progressives claim is a natural human right?

This is why Democrats should be shaking in their boots and Republicans who are now talking about accepting Obamacare and merely "working out the bugs" should be prepared to bid their careers good-bye.

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