Thursday, June 21, 2012

Scherz: The Schizophrenia of the AMA

In his 6/19/2012 TownHall column, Dr. Hal Scherz of Docs4PatientCare discusses "The Schizophrenia of the AMA". One excerpt:
The AMA's problems have deepened because they are not what they purport themselves to be- the spokesman for the community of physicians. How can they be when only approximately 10% of the practicing physicians in the US are members?
In contrast to the 1960's when over 75% of doctors belonged to the AMA, their influence in the medical community has waned considerably, in part because they are out of touch with the views of practicing physicians.
Obamacare is a perfect example. A recent Jackson Healthcare survey reported that 70% of doctors felt that it deserved a failing grade and 55% felt that it should be repealed -- clearly not the AMA position. Only 12 % of doctors thought that the ACA would fix healthcare.
In an effort to regain lost credibility amongst physicians, and to become more relevant, the AMA did what most people expected them to do -- they "pivoted". This involved "tough talk" and taking some oppositional positions against the "bad" parts of Obamacare, attempting to make everyone forget that they were partly responsible for this law...
However, the AMA is still fond of improper government intervention in private affairs.  For example the Los Angeles Times recently reported on the AMA's support of Bloomberg-style nanny state regulations in, "Soda taxes endorsed by AMA as a way to fight obesity" (6/20/2012).

Fortunately, the AMA does not speak for all doctors.  Instead, physicians can now seek out other professional organizations like D4PC who will fight for the interests of doctors, patients, and freedom.