More Unintended Consequences of Obamacare
I’ve been “non-conforming” all my life and always been proud of it (my wife and friends will surely confirm….). . Little did I know, that under Obamacare it would become official. I’m Non-Conforming and at some point might lose my Doctor. Another far-fetched claim? You decide….
Last week I visited my Doctor to update a few prescriptions which were about to expire. As we age (ughhh), the number of pills that we all start to take begins to add up and I made the decision not to take one of the medicines that my Doctor had recommended. OK, I’m a little overweight and drink a few glasses of wine on occasion, but I exercise like a fiend, live a generally active life and take pretty good care of myself.
My Doctor went on to explain to me the facts of Obamacare. His job is to make sure that I don’t get Diabetes, that my blood pressure is under check and that everything he does insures that my health level stays within an acceptable range. He explained with the new electronic medical records that he would be judged by his patients “conformance” to these health standards and that the rate that he got reimbursed by the Federal Government and Insurance Companies would depend on the compliance rate of his patients. Just like a grade card, he would be judged by whether his patients “conformed”.
At some point, he said, if his patients don’t “conform” to certain standards that he, as my Doctor, might be forced to drop individual patients to keep his percentage of conformance at a high level to get the highest reimbursement rates possible. When the Government starts to apply these standards across a whole range of Doctor groups and practices the economic consequences of a lower reimbursement rate could be extreme. Non-conforming patients might lose their Doctors and become a whole new type of patient without Doctors called “Non Conformers.”
Did my Doctor tell me that I had to take the medicine that I didn’t want? No. Did he tell me that if I didn’t conform I would lose him as a Doctor? No. Did my Doctor subtlety tell me to get on board with Obamacare? I’m not sure. At the end of my appointment, in front of my very eyes, I got one more clear vision of where this health care legislation is going. To all you “conformers” and “non-conformers” out there, empower yourselves to make changes to this faulty law now.