Suckers by Pat Conrad MD

three-card-monte

Far be it from me to pile on, but…what the hell. Doug recently posted a piece documenting how the supporters of the ACA are (again) surprised that the bad idea which is Medicaid just got a whole lot bigger, and worse.

The leftist oracle New York Times moans: “Just as millions of people are gaining insurance through Medicaid, the program is poised to make deep cuts in payments to many doctors, prompting some physicians and consumer advocates to warn that the reductions could make it more difficult for Medicaid patients to obtain care.”

The ACA gave temporary Medicaid rate increases, which are fixin’ to expire, while the Obama administration is briefing the Supreme Court that doctors have no legal standing “to challenge the adequacy of payments they received from Medicaid.”

At this point, let me throw a respectful shout out to Denise and other like-minded: how would YOU react to a 43% drop in your income, courtesy of the federal government? According to the Urban Institute – not my favorite source by any means – a haircut of that magnitude is in the offing for physicians who take Medicaid.

  • Rates are expected to revert to 2012 levels, already deemed to be inadequate.
  • “Under federal law, Medicaid rates must be “sufficient to enlist enough providers” so that beneficiaries have at least as much access to care as the general population in their geographic area.” However The Dear Leader has informed the Supreme Court that physicians have no legal right to enforce the “equal access” requirement in court, per Donald B. Verrilli Jr., the solicitor general of the United States.
  • “Matt D. Salo, the executive director of the National Association of Medicaid Directors, which represents state officials, said his group had not lobbied for an extension of the Medicaid fee increase. “It has rewarded providers who were already doing the right thing, but did not bring in a flood of new providers.” At this point, my forehead started throbbing – who is this puny little bureaucrat to say what is and is not “the right thing”? Has this weasel ever given a Medicaid patient a bag full of free meds, only to follow up with them a month later to learn that they never took them? Has this government-funded altruist ever treated a damned obese, chronic pain, welfare patient who, repeatedly counseled not to smoke, fired up in the parking lot after the visit for chronic pain meds? Has this poisonous soul ever treated an STD-ridden crack mom on kid number six, all at government expense? I sure have, and to say it pisses me off is a mild understatement.
  • “Joseph A. Reblando, a spokesman for Medicaid Health Plans of America, said, “The fee increase was a good idea in concept, but it was built on an antiquated system in which doctors were paid a separate fee for each service.” Doctors being paid for the work they did…”antiquated”.

Medicaid was/is a terrible idea, promoted by government, accepted by feckless establishment medicine, greedy doctors, do-gooder groups, and lazy welfare grabbers. And it’s being expanded by the ACA, which is about actual care the way I’m about alcohol-free-beer, fat-free-cheese, and the notion that Arianna Grande is an actual artist. Just a flimsy con-job for the dull-witted.

64090cookie-checkSuckers by Pat Conrad MD