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WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession

 
The_Venerable
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11/18/2008 08:13 AM
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WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
Half of primary-care doctors in survey would leave medicine
By Val Willingham
CNN Medical Producer

CNN) -- Nearly half the respondents in a survey of U.S. primary care physicians said that they would seriously consider getting out of the medical business within the next three years if they had an alternative.

The survey, released this week by the Physicians' Foundation, which promotes better doctor-patient relationships, sought to find the reasons for an identified exodus among family doctors and internists, widely known as the backbone of the health industry.

A U.S. shortage of 35,000 to 40,000 primary care physicians by 2025 was predicted at last week's American Medical Association annual meeting.

In the survey, the foundation sent questionnaires to more than 150,000 doctors nationwide.

Of the 12,000 respondents, 49 percent said they'd consider leaving medicine. Many said they are overwhelmed with their practices, not because they have too many patients, but because there's too much red tape generated from insurance companies and government agencies.

And if that many physicians stopped practicing, that could be devastating to the health care industry.

"We couldn't survive that," says Dr. Walker Ray, vice president of the Physicians Foundation. "We are only producing in this country a thousand to two thousand primary doctors to replace them. Medical students are not choosing primary care."

Dr. Alan Pocinki has been practicing medicine for 17 years. He began his career around the same time insurance companies were turning to the PPO and HMO models. So he was a little shocked when he began spending more time on paperwork than patients and found he was running a small business, instead of a practice. He says it's frustrating.

"I had no business training, as far as how to run a business, or how to evaluate different plans," Pocinki says. "It was a whole brave new world and I had to sort of learn on the fly."

To manage their daily work schedules, many survey respondents reported making changes. With lower reimbursement from insurance companies and the cost of malpractice insurance skyrocketing, these health professionals say it's not worth running a practice and are changing careers. Others say they're going into so-called boutique medicine, in which they charge patients a yearly fee up front and don't take insurance.

And some like Pocinki are limiting the type of insurance they'll take and the number of patients on Medicare and Medicaid. According to the foundation's report, over a third of those surveyed have closed their practices to Medicaid patients and 12 percent have closed their practices to Medicare patients That can leave a lot of patients looking for a doctor.

And as Ray mentioned, med school students are shying away from family medicine. In a survey published in the Journal of the American Medical Association in September, only 2 percent of current medical students plan to take up primary care. That's because these students are wary of the same complaints that are causing existing doctors to flee primary care: hectic clinics, burdensome paperwork and systems that do a poor job of managing patients with chronic illness.

So what to do? Physicians don't have a lot of answers. But doctors say it's time to make some changes, not only in the health care field but also with the insurance industry. And they're looking to the new administration for guidance.

One of President-elect Barack Obama's health care promises is to provide a primary care physician for every American. But some health experts, including Pocinki, are skeptical.

"People who have insurance can't find a doctor, so suddenly we are going to give insurance to a whole bunch of people who haven't had it, without increasing the number of physicians?" he says. "It's going to be a problem."

[link to www.cnn.com]
Anonymous Coward
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11/18/2008 08:21 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
insurance companies, bankers, lawyers, politicians...the least creative bunch of people in society, yet they're at the "top", leaching off of the hard work and creative talent of the people

i hope that picture changes soon
Anonymous Coward
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11/18/2008 08:28 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
Half of primary-care doctors in survey would leave medicine
By Val Willingham
CNN Medical Producer

CNN) -- Nearly half the respondents in a survey of U.S. primary care physicians said that they would seriously consider getting out of the medical business within the next three years if they had an alternative.

The survey, released this week by the Physicians' Foundation, which promotes better doctor-patient relationships, sought to find the reasons for an identified exodus among family doctors and internists, widely known as the backbone of the health industry.

A U.S. shortage of 35,000 to 40,000 primary care physicians by 2025 was predicted at last week's American Medical Association annual meeting.

In the survey, the foundation sent questionnaires to more than 150,000 doctors nationwide.

Of the 12,000 respondents, 49 percent said they'd consider leaving medicine. Many said they are overwhelmed with their practices, not because they have too many patients, but because there's too much red tape generated from insurance companies and government agencies.

And if that many physicians stopped practicing, that could be devastating to the health care industry.

"We couldn't survive that," says Dr. Walker Ray, vice president of the Physicians Foundation. "We are only producing in this country a thousand to two thousand primary doctors to replace them. Medical students are not choosing primary care."

Dr. Alan Pocinki has been practicing medicine for 17 years. He began his career around the same time insurance companies were turning to the PPO and HMO models. So he was a little shocked when he began spending more time on paperwork than patients and found he was running a small business, instead of a practice. He says it's frustrating.

"I had no business training, as far as how to run a business, or how to evaluate different plans," Pocinki says. "It was a whole brave new world and I had to sort of learn on the fly."

To manage their daily work schedules, many survey respondents reported making changes. With lower reimbursement from insurance companies and the cost of malpractice insurance skyrocketing, these health professionals say it's not worth running a practice and are changing careers. Others say they're going into so-called boutique medicine, in which they charge patients a yearly fee up front and don't take insurance.

And some like Pocinki are limiting the type of insurance they'll take and the number of patients on Medicare and Medicaid. According to the foundation's report, over a third of those surveyed have closed their practices to Medicaid patients and 12 percent have closed their practices to Medicare patients That can leave a lot of patients looking for a doctor.

And as Ray mentioned, med school students are shying away from family medicine. In a survey published in the Journal of the American Medical Association in September, only 2 percent of current medical students plan to take up primary care. That's because these students are wary of the same complaints that are causing existing doctors to flee primary care: hectic clinics, burdensome paperwork and systems that do a poor job of managing patients with chronic illness.

So what to do? Physicians don't have a lot of answers. But doctors say it's time to make some changes, not only in the health care field but also with the insurance industry. And they're looking to the new administration for guidance.

One of President-elect Barack Obama's health care promises is to provide a primary care physician for every American. But some health experts, including Pocinki, are skeptical.

"People who have insurance can't find a doctor, so suddenly we are going to give insurance to a whole bunch of people who haven't had it, without increasing the number of physicians?" he says. "It's going to be a problem."

[link to www.cnn.com]
 Quoting: The_Venerable 412220

when the medical field becomes even more socialized under Obama,(something u lefties were hopping mad for) then there is no point in working for peanuts, after 10 plus years of College.
Anonymous Coward
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11/18/2008 08:54 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
The US healthcare system has priced itself out of reach of the citizens and is about to undergo a radical downsizing.

On a price performance basis, it is the worst in the world. We'd be better off with witch doctors.
Anonymous Coward
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11/18/2008 09:07 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
"healthcare" is practically the only job left on the planet
The_Venerable (OP)
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11/18/2008 09:09 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
The US healthcare system has priced itself out of reach of the citizens and is about to undergo a radical downsizing.

On a price performance basis, it is the worst in the world. We'd be better off with witch doctors.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 553689


It's not really even a healthcare system. It's an insurance care system.
Cunning_linguist

User ID: 552663
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11/18/2008 09:17 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
I have a team of Doctors who cut my grass and wash my cars. One of em' just sits next to me and changes the channel on the TV for me. Batteries in remotes are really bad for the environment ya know.
De Bunker Hiding in a Bunker.
Anonymous Coward
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11/18/2008 09:20 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
insurance companies, bankers, lawyers, politicians...the least creative bunch of people in society, yet they're at the "top", leaching off of the hard work and creative talent of the people

i hope that picture changes soon
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward

Not with socialized medicine coming.

My kids doctor told me last week this would probably be her last year in practice now that Obama has been elected.
Anonymous Coward
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11/18/2008 09:21 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
it's true, the insurance and pharmaceutical companies are in control of the health system with the doctors under them.
rachel
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11/18/2008 09:22 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
wow to waist so much time and money on college.
Anonymous Coward
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11/18/2008 09:33 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
MORE HEALTH CARE REFORM!!!! LOL
Anonymous Coward
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11/18/2008 09:37 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
Downfall of the Medical Cartel will save many lives. Something good is in the air, I can feel it coming.
anonymous coward
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11/18/2008 09:49 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
I'm in the health care field and I'd also like to quit....

I definately see a collpase coming, once the insurance companies become non profits, there won't be any health care...
Anonymous Coward
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11/18/2008 09:52 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
it's true, the insurance and pharmaceutical companies are in control of the health system with the doctors under them.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 501457


Agreed. As a healthcare provider, I spend a lot of my time jumping through hoops now -- authorizations; tx plans; this form, that form, etc. etc. In my field, the reimbursement rates for services have gone done almost 50% over the past 20 yrs; while expenses and time consuming non-direct service activities dictated by insurance companies go up. "Mangled Care" has hurt the consumers, the providers and lined the pockets of the insurance companies. It's turned into a "production line" service industry, quality of service is down. In fighting with insurance companies to authorize needed services, in one instance, I've had an insurance case manager tell me they wouldn't authorize the service because "you'll provide it anyway." (She was right. I did.) Premiums go up, out of pocket deductibles go up, copays go up, reimbursement rates go down, covered services get curtailed. If I could figure out a way to get out of the business at this stage, I'd bail -- as would a lot of my colleagues. That what happens when you let profit motivated corporations in the service industries take over. Have you noted that you don't hear about pharma and healthcare insurance companies going belly up.
Sinanju
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11/18/2008 09:52 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
Heh! The Docs I know say they want to move to some nice quiet island nation where they can practice medicine without the Obama shoving his hand in their pocket!

Go OBAMA!
MeAgain
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11/18/2008 09:53 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
Doctors have enough BS to muddle through with the insurance companies. When Obama starts with socialized medicine, half of the doctors WILL quit. You idiots wanted change, but forgot to ask what kind of change.
Anonymous Coward
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11/18/2008 10:02 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
"Of the 12,000 respondents, 49 percent said they'd consider leaving medicine. Many said they are overwhelmed with their practices, not because they have too many patients, but because there's too much red tape generated from insurance companies and government agencies."


Think about it! The docs deal with blood and pus all day, listen to hypochondriacs and then with the g'ment red tape.

I'd quit too, or go fishing.
Anonymous Coward
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11/18/2008 10:03 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
Downfall of the Medical Cartel will save many lives. Something good is in the air, I can feel it coming.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 550601



Agreed, but there will be much nasty smoke before it clears and we breathe the "good in the air".
Anonymous Coward
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11/18/2008 10:05 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
Boohoo. Doctors are overrated. Half of the time they don't know what the hell they're talking about, and you can self-educate yourself on the issue much more efficiently.
NikkiLaVey

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11/18/2008 10:08 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
Most doctors are in it for the money anyway.
If we don't help each other who will

Dream the Good Dream,

Nikki
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11/18/2008 10:08 AM

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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
My neighbor is quitting his practice of 15 years, and he loves Obama.

He just knows that the Canadization of American Medicine is something he does not want to be forced to participate in, so he is quitting.


Go Obama!
attxflag
"Honor the Texas flag; I pledge allegiance to thee, Texas, one state under God, one and indivisible."

[link to www.statutes.legis.state.tx.us]
Anonymous Coward
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11/18/2008 10:19 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
The 'doctors' were fine riding the gravy train while medical schools kept MOST applicants from entering the profession and thus their 'take home' was ENORMOUS. Now they're crying because if ALL CITIZENS actually get a modicum of healthcare via Obama, their patient load will be unmanageable. Fuck them. Go to an alternative health practioner or educate yourself about your own body. Eat right, exercise, poop everyday, drink lots of water and pretty much you're gonna be ok.
Anonymous Coward
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11/18/2008 10:34 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
Doctors have enough BS to muddle through with the insurance companies. When Obama starts with socialized medicine, half of the doctors WILL quit. You idiots wanted change, but forgot to ask what kind of change.
 Quoting: MeAgain 477567

bsflag
Anonymous Coward
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11/18/2008 10:41 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
The 'doctors' were fine riding the gravy train while medical schools kept MOST applicants from entering the profession and thus their 'take home' was ENORMOUS. Now they're crying because if ALL CITIZENS actually get a modicum of healthcare via Obama, their patient load will be unmanageable. Fuck them. Go to an alternative health practioner or educate yourself about your own body. Eat right, exercise, poop everyday, drink lots of water and pretty much you're gonna be ok.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 24308


So, if you fall off a ladder and break your back, just "rest up" and you'll be okay ? Get rearended in a car accident, just bend and stretch and do yoga, you'll be fine ? Get burned in a fire, just soak in a tub ? Baby born with a congenital defect- say a hole in the heart -- go to an alternative healer for heart herbs and supplements ? Just saying.....
Anonymous Coward
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11/18/2008 10:44 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
The 'doctors' were fine riding the gravy train while medical schools kept MOST applicants from entering the profession and thus their 'take home' was ENORMOUS. Now they're crying because if ALL CITIZENS actually get a modicum of healthcare via Obama, their patient load will be unmanageable. Fuck them. Go to an alternative health practioner or educate yourself about your own body. Eat right, exercise, poop everyday, drink lots of water and pretty much you're gonna be ok.


So, if you fall off a ladder and break your back, just "rest up" and you'll be okay ? Get rearended in a car accident, just bend and stretch and do yoga, you'll be fine ? Get burned in a fire, just soak in a tub ? Baby born with a congenital defect- say a hole in the heart -- go to an alternative healer for heart herbs and supplements ? Just saying.....
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 478606


Come on. Quit the fear mongering and be realistic. How often do these events occur?
The Analog Guy

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11/18/2008 10:47 AM

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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
I'm in the OR right now and have been a doc for 24 years and I want out.
I say burn all of your bridges while you still have control of the flame.
We are like flies crawling across the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel: We cannot see what angels and gods lie underneath the threshold of our perceptions. We do not live in reality; we live in our paradigms, our habituated perceptions, our illusions; the illusions we share through culture we call reality, but the true historical reality of our condition is invisible to us.”
dude in florida

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11/18/2008 10:51 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
The 'doctors' were fine riding the gravy train while medical schools kept MOST applicants from entering the profession and thus their 'take home' was ENORMOUS. Now they're crying because if ALL CITIZENS actually get a modicum of healthcare via Obama, their patient load will be unmanageable. Fuck them. Go to an alternative health practioner or educate yourself about your own body. Eat right, exercise, poop everyday, drink lots of water and pretty much you're gonna be ok.


So, if you fall off a ladder and break your back, just "rest up" and you'll be okay ? Get rearended in a car accident, just bend and stretch and do yoga, you'll be fine ? Get burned in a fire, just soak in a tub ? Baby born with a congenital defect- say a hole in the heart -- go to an alternative healer for heart herbs and supplements ? Just saying.....


Come on. Quit the fear mongering and be realistic. How often do these events occur?
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 476073



he's an idiot.
Anonymous Coward
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11/18/2008 10:51 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
One of President-elect Barack Obama's health care promises is to provide a primary care physician for every American. But some health experts, including Pocinki, are skeptical.

"People who have insurance can't find a doctor, so suddenly we are going to give insurance to a whole bunch of people who haven't had it, without increasing the number of physicians?" he says. "It's going to be a problem."

 Quoting: The_Venerable 412220


Yup ... uhuh ... same President-elect who is promising all those new jobs. Uhuh ... got real HOPE for that CHANGE!!!
Anonymous Coward
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11/18/2008 10:53 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
With all the things I am leraning about the medical profession the poisoned medicines the tainted vaccines, it doesn't surprise me that doctors no longer want to be hit men for the new world order. Who wants to heal the scum and kill the innocent.For the time being, those who want to heal should become herbalists.
Anonymous Coward
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11/18/2008 10:53 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
Most doctors are in it for the money anyway.
 Quoting: NikkiLaVey


Yep ... until YOU need ONE!
Anonymous Coward
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11/18/2008 10:59 AM
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Re: WTF?! Half of U.S. Doctors Want to Quit, Work in Another Profession
They aren't going to quit. They've put too much investment into that one particular career. Plus, there's red tape / administrivia / paper work to deal with every where.

Maybe they should just lobby for a single-payer health insurance plan - ?





GLP