Dr. Rosen: There has been a lot of discussions for “Medicare-for-all” recently. Is that likely? And if so, how will it affect us as practicing physicians and surgeons.
Dr. Edwards: I think it will speed up the number of physicians that will look forward to either an earlier retirement or an alternate profession.
Dr. Milton: We certainly have skills in a lot of fields as represented in our several dozens of specialties. The expertise in many of these skills would in turn open up the doors to a number of fields of interest and innovations.
Dr. Ruth: I would accept the intrusion and continue practicing internal medicine, restricting the type of patients I would see. I would also look over the alternatives that would not be as restrictive as we would imagine.
Dr. Michelle: There will always be babies coming into the world and I would continue delivering them as possible. There would be more competition from midwives and they would need OBG backup for complicated deliveries.
Dr. Yancy: As a surgeon, I might even go into veterinarian medicine. I should be able to complete the veterinarian program in two years with my medical and surgical background. In fact, I think it would be interesting to begin doing animal surgery. I would think that my malpractice insurance would really drop.
Dr. Patricia: As a Dermatologist, there are many diseases that are chronic and physician assistants and nurse practitioners would have enough unhappy patients that there would always be a need for an expert.
Dr. Edwards: That brings up another challenge that would be difficult to navigate. There recently was a case of a $6-million-dollar suit against a physician because his nurse practitioner had an adverse event which caused death. The physician never saw the patient but was her supervisor and thus held responsible for her actions.
Dr. Milton: That points out that I would never accept a position of being responsible for an underling. They need to obtain their own malpractice liability insurance. After a few million-dollar lawsuits, their malpractice premiums would begin to equal a physician’s liability premium.
Dr. Rosen: That should put the kybosh on the current tendency to replace us with lower level providers. The very idea that a physician assistant with only undergraduate credentials could replace physicians with four years of professional education and many with another four years of post-doctoral training is really quite ludicrous when it comes to quality of care which is the hallmark of medical care these days.
The Staff Lounge Is Where Unfiltered Opinions Are Heard.