Doctoring Health Care Health Care Reform

Independent doctors?

In response to my story on how physician consolidation and hospital ownership of doctors is affecting patient referral patterns, I received an email with this attached PDF file.  (Smudges mine)

Click to enlarge

It is from a cardiac surgeon who doggedly chooses to remain independent. This document appears on his website and also ran in the local newspaper as an advertisement.

Hopefully, the employer of your doctor has also employed the ‘best’ specialists.

(The trouble is that in the eyes of some policy-makers and employers–perhaps the same ones that refer to doctors as “providers”– there is a belief that all cardiologists, or surgeons, or (insert any specialty) are interchangeable.  And yes, if you look at doctors on spreadsheets of CPT codes and wRVUs this would be true, but at the bedside, in the operating room or in the EP lab whilst we use our varying degrees of skills, training and experience, doctors differ vastly.)

Sorry, you all already knew that.  It would be common sense.