Thursday, May 30, 2013
What do you think of Obamacare?
This provision of the law was made with the idea of giving hospitals an incentive to pay special attention to their COPD patients to make sure they are educated about their disease, are on all the best medicines, and their are follow up appointments made to make sure the patient is taking his or her medicine.
Other people disagree with that claim. They say that the provision was implicitly placed into the law to give CMS an excuse not to reimburse hospitals for said patient. There is some credibility to their claim considering it does not matter what the patient is readmitted for: heart failure, COPD exacerbation, high blood pressure, low blood pressure, rickets, a hand nail, or anxiety.
These patients have a high rate of morbidity, and it's nearly impossible to know, even if the physician is being proactive, what ailment might plague that patient in a day or two. Our hospital, and every other hospital I've ever worked for, has had a steady flow of COPD patients, many who are admitted often enough to become good friends with the hospital staff. With this law, there are many hospitals that will go under.
There is also a stipulation in Obamacare to make it easier for hospitals to merge, and many hospitals in the geographical region where I live have merged since Obamacare went into effect. Some of my friends claim that these provisions, and the entire Obamacare law, was implicitly put into place with the intention of causing the health care system to fail. When the health care system fails, people will come calling to the government to bail them out with universal health care.
With most hospitals already joined into large conglomerates, taking away competition and the incentive to lower prices, the government will have fewer companies to combine. When Obamacare fails, they say, so too will the health care system.
I think it was worded best by a physician friend of mine: "The government caused the mess with health care by becoming involved in it in the 1960s, before that time it was a pay for service system, and the cost of health care was low. Since the 1960s, health care costs have increased, making it so most people cannot afford it. So then career politicians, the same people who caused the problem, purported to fix it with even more government. This is a system set up for disaster."
I personally, as my regular readers already know, am among the 54-58% of Americans opposed to Obamacare. What do you think of it? Be nice.