Something askew

Kaiser Family Foundation reports that the average family premium for health insurance will be $10,800 next year, more than a full-time minimum wage salary. Meanwhile, excellent primary care physicians like Dr. Lindeman (see his comment on the concierge medicine post) struggle to make a reasonable living. What gives? For one thing there’s an over-allocation of resources to expensive diagnostics, surgical procedures and drugs and not enough emphasis on quality primary care.

September 15, 2005

One thought on “Something askew”

  1. Thanks for the kind words, David.

    I wish the solution were so simple.

    I have another suggestion.

    It may be the case that primary care pediatrics should not be delivered by physicians. The market will not “pay” for it! The laws of supply and demand would seem to suggest that we (docs) ought not to be doing this job.

    One of pediatrics’ “dirty little secrets” (that I love to tell) is that top-drawer pediatric primary care is being delivered by nurse practitioners and physician’s assistants.

    I predict that I and my colleagues will retreat to the hospitals from whence we came by century’s end. We will revert to subspecialty work that was pediatrics’ original raison d’etre.

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