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View Diary: Medicare also going over the "cliff" (108 comments)

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  •  The AMA opposed the creation of Medicare (6+ / 0-)

    and Medicaid in the 1960s. And they opposed to anything like the British or Canadian systems in the US. Their opposition was purely about keeping up the incomes of doctors: they were against any form of government cost containment back then, because the costs of health care mostly went into their pockets.

    Eventually, corporations rebelled against paying these costs for their employees, so Ronald Reagan handed the reins of health care over to insurance companies. Now most of the cost of health care goes into the pockets of the insurance companies, and doctors, though still generally well paid, are no longer in charge of the system.

    •  just as a reminder (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Alden, david78209

      most physicians working today are NOT members of the AMA. I'm not, and neither are most of the docs I work with.

      •  AMA doesn't represent me either (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Alden, mudfud27, david78209

        The membership percentage is in the 15-20% range. They'd already lost much of their liberal membership. They lost some of their more conservative members recently over their support for ACA.

        Membership number is heavily inflated by the non-issue oriented memberships as well.

        The AMA very heavily recruits medical student members. They offer educational products that are valuable to medical students, and they bundle these into membership. It was considerably cheaper to get my essential anatomy textbook (Netter's Atlas) this way.

        For more established docs, they offer insurance products that are (sometimes) cheaper than you can get elsewhere as well.

        I get more junk mail from the AMA than I've ever gotten from anyone else (which is surprising for someone who has been a member of multiple lefty groups and has been a volunteer and donor).

        The AMA is a cross-specialty group, which therefore includes the very richest of doctors, who are in the procedural specialties. The salaries and trend in political outlooks tends to differ between these doctors and primary care docs and those in cognitive specialties. Neither set of doctors is monolithic in belief of course.

        I care much more about what the specialty organizations say. The largest specialty organization (the American College of Physicians, which is the group for internal medicine doctors) is on record as supporting single payer, for example.

        The plural of anecdote is not data.

        by Skipbidder on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 09:03:05 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I've never been an AMA member, and I still get (0+ / 0-)

          a lot of junk mail from them.  They get my address from the county medical society and the state medical association, which I joined over 30 years ago.  
          I'm probably going to quit those organizations -- what they do doesn't come close to justifying the dues they charge.  The one thing that held me back for years was that I had life insurance through them.  Recently I got other (cheaper) life insurance so I'm just about out of any reason to pay almost $800 a year in combined state and county dues.

          Years ago I seriously considered telling the AMA that I'd died.  Men are (still) supposed to stay registered for the draft from ages 18 through 25, but the government wanted to keep doctors registered to age 50, so they could draft some if there were a big war.  The AMA made a deal, offering to make available its fairly comprehensive list of names and addresses of all the doctors in the country, in exchange for doctors not having to stay registered and presumably carry a draft card.  I might have tried it, but at the time I wanted to stay in the county and state organizations, so I didn't think I'd get away with it.

          We're all pretty strange one way or another; some of us just hide it better. "Normal" is a dryer setting.

          by david78209 on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 06:11:11 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

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