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Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:32 PM

California lacks doctors to meet demand of national healthcare law

SACRAMENTO As the state moves to expand healthcare coverage to millions of Californians under President Obama's healthcare law, it faces a major obstacle: There aren't enough doctors to treat a crush of newly insured patients.

Some lawmakers want to fill the gap by redefining who can provide healthcare.

They are working on proposals that would allow physician assistants to treat more patients and nurse practitioners to set up independent practices. Pharmacists and optometrists could act as primary care providers, diagnosing and managing some chronic illnesses, such as diabetes and high-blood pressure.

http://www.latimes.com/health/la-me-doctors-20130210,0,1509396.story









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Reply California lacks doctors to meet demand of national healthcare law (Original post)
madville Feb 2013 OP
SheilaT Feb 2013 #1
bossy22 Feb 2013 #2
SheilaT Feb 2013 #4
Mojorabbit Feb 2013 #3
newfie11 Feb 2013 #5

Response to madville (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:21 PM

1. I have heard this as a supposedly valid reason to oppose the healthcare

known as Obamacare.

Keep in mind that the AMA made a calculated decision back (I think) in the 1970's to limit medical school students. Yeah. National health care or no national health care, we don't need no stinkin' doctors.

The first thing that ought to be taking place is a calculated effort to increase medical school enrollments. Maybe nursing school enrollments, because I am aware that in some parts of the country it's really hard to get into nursing school, not just because of basic requirements, but because of limited space. Gosh, there's something familiar about that.

Oh. And if I were dictator of North America, I'd either have the federal government pay for all medical school, or make the amount of tuition the student must pay something reasonable, but no more than $10,000/year. Your definition of reasonable may vary.

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Response to SheilaT (Reply #1)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 12:18 AM

2. what the AMA did though prevented the medical field from looking like the law field

where there is extreme oversaturation. The difference is that unlike a law degree which is still good even if you don't get a "law job" right out of school, if you don't get a residency, your medical degree is pretty much worthless. You can't practice, you can't work at a hospital. You might be able to do research but chances are you won't be paid much more than any other research assistant since medical school training is clinically oriented, not research oriented

Also, medical school tuition isn't the only thing- its the training itself. If you subsidized my schooling it would be a huge boost, but it still doesn't alleviate the stress of 8-10 years of post-college training- and I mean rigorous post college training. The fact is, Medical School isn't fun, it isn't like college. It's like working 100 hours a week with no vacations- the only thing is there is no garuntee of a paycheck at the end.

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Response to bossy22 (Reply #2)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:17 AM

4. But as long as I can remember

and I'm 64 years old, there has been a demand for physicians that has been greater than the number of physicians out there.

While the training to be a doctor isn't fun, I know, at least if it's paid for a huge part of the stress might well be alleviated. And it's not as if doctors have trouble finding employment at the end of their training. Really.

For what it's worth, I have known any number of doctors in my adult life. None of them seemed to have trouble finding employment, and they all lived in very nice parts of town, to put it mildly.

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Response to madville (Original post)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 12:52 AM

3. This is a recipe for disaster

" Pharmacists and optometrists could act as primary care providers, diagnosing and managing some chronic illnesses, such as diabetes and high-blood pressure. " and I say this as a retired nurse.

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Response to madville (Original post)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 06:27 AM

5. PA's & NP's have been a big help in rural areas

In SD, MT, WY I am aware of small towns that would have no health care if not for these professionals manning those clinics. Granted they do have an MD that is over them but that MD was not in those towns.
Broadus MT, Wall SD, Faith SD, Coldstrip MT, Sundance WY, are just a few I am familiar with.

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