File this one in the “I told you so” file:
No, You Can’t Keep Your Health Plan
Insurers and doctors are already consolidating their businesses in the wake of ObamaCare’s passage.
Consolidated practices and salaried doctors will leave fewer options for patients and longer waiting times for routine appointments. Like the insurers, physicians are responding to the economic burdens of the president’s plan in one of the few ways they’re permitted to.
For physicians, the strains include higher operating costs. The Obama health plan puts expensive new mandates on doctors, such as a requirement to purchase IT systems and keep more records. Overhead costs already consume more than 60% of the revenue generated by an average medical practice, according to a 2007 survey by the Medical Group Management Association. At the same time, reimbursement under Medicare is falling. Some specialists, such as radiologists and cardiologists, will see their Medicare payments fall by more than 10% next year. Then there’s the fact that medical malpractice premiums have risen by 10%-20% annually for specialists like surgeons, particularly in states that haven’t passed liability reform.
The bottom line: Defensive business arrangements designed to blunt ObamaCare’s economic impacts will mean less patient choice.
Don Surber points out that more doctors are opting out of Medicare at a higher rate.