Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Rhoads: Concierge Physicians Now Being Targeted By Regulators

Jared Rhoads of the Center for Objective Health Policy notes, "Concierge physicians now being targeted by regulators".

Here is the opening of his OpEd:
According to a new rule that was passed in October and took effect on January 1st, concierge physicians in Oregon are now required to register their practices with the state's insurance department.1 To comply, concierge physicians and other doctors on retainer must share their business plan, financial history, and practice information with the state, submit marketing materials for review, and disclose any past bankruptcies going back 25 years.

The legislation was proposed by the state's insurance division. Insurers complained that, since concierge practices take a fee up front in exchange for care to be provided later, the practices are in the business of managing risk not unlike insurers. Their portfolio of clients, for example, cannot be allowed to exceed the capacity of the practice to provide the service promised. (That is, in the judgment of some unelected bureaucrat.)
(Read the full text of "Concierge physicians now being targeted by regulators".)

More and more physicians are seeking to escape the government-controlled insurance system by forming "direct pay" or "concierge" practices, so that they can practice medicine on their terms, for the mutual benefit of patient and doctor alike. Patients receive better care at reasonable prices, and doctors are able to practice according to their best medical conscience.

These independent practices thus pose a huge threat to government bureaucrats wishing to control how American medicine is practiced. The state of Oregon has taken the next step in attempting to herd doctors back under government control. The battle over concierge medicine could become the next big front in the fight for American health care freedom.


"Oregon requires concierge physicians to register with insurance department", American Medical News, 2/1/2012.

"Myths about concierge medicine", Dr. John Kihm, 1/9/2012.