How Should Doctors be Paid?
Board: Macro Economics
Will just jump in for a couple of thoughts.
Since I have posted before about a single payer system a couple of years ago (in favor of it) I won't repeat myself.
Some things to consider and say out loud although we all intuitively know this.
There are good Doctors, average Doctors and poor doctors.
There are good lawyers, police officers, teachers, business leaders and there are average and poor ones too. Make no mistake about it.
Be careful when you lump all "Medicine" in the same category. Some of us are skillful with our hands. Others our minds. Most all have to have a vast array of knowledge to do what we do. Nurse practitioners have a place. It is limited. Period. A Nurse practitioner or Physicians assistant are limited in their experience and skill set. They have value and a place in today's medicine. They do not spend 4 years in Medical School and then 3-7 years in a Residency program. They cannot perform surgeries, do heart caths, manage multiple organ system failure in an acute setting and you do not want them managing your acute Myocardial infarction while trying to correct your electrolyte imbalances because you are on dialysis after an episode of renal failure.
Get it? All medicine is not created equal. Secondary level providers have value and can treat minor or stable long term issues fine.
I have spoken privately to many members on this board about medical issues off line. I have enjoyed sharing what I can. It always gives me a great sense of value and appreciation for the career I have chosen. Even though I see posts that "these guys only went into medicine to 'get rich' and are a greedy bunch of bastards", I know better.
How to pay a doctor? Too many different types to lump into one category. Days worked? Hours worked? Location worked? Nights on Call? Stress under the gun? Do you pay the same for someone refilling BP meds and treating diabetes the same as someone who is called at a moment's notice at 2 a.m. with someone dying of massive hemorrhage that requires incredible skill so he or she doesn't die? While both are important roles, it is clear one takes a higher toll on personal life and health. When you let someone else decide what they get paid, be careful what you ask for............
I see it said all the time that there is better healthcare in other countries. Maybe so. I look slightly sideways as such claims and the context in which these stats are compiled. I sure don't want to live outside the US when I retire and rely on "other healthcare", but maybe that's just me.
As I have said countless times,
Eliminate private companies making profit off of illness. Insurance companies, pharma etc....
Pay researchers very reasonable salaries to develop medicines and technology to continue to advance medical science. This is the one area I feel the Federal Government could do great good if they had the gonads to do so. We got lots O smart people who can do the same thing for "the world" that are doing it for Merck, Galaxo.....etc....
Eliminate Medical Malpractice as it stands today. Set up Several committees in every state to review bad outcomes and make specific recs that may include taking away a medical license if a pattern of poor care is obvious. Have set compensation for medical injuries that benefits the injured patient that has already been determined. Get rid of lawyer paydays for other people's injuries.
I know this: You do not want hard working, dedicated, empathetic people to stop wanting to be doctors because it becomes a sucky job. You will have sucky doctors. Trust me....... We already have enough of them and they bounce from job to job just like every other profession.
12 years of undergrad--4 years of college--3 years of grad school-- 4 years of medical school---4 years of residency
In case your counting that is 27 years of schooling to be able to do the job I do. And yes, I save a life or two a year with what I do. So do many others and that is why we love our work.
Be careful what you ask for................. you just may get it...
Wooly.............. who still thinks he has the best job in the world even with all the changes lo these 26 years...........