The AMA – Trust At Your Own Risk

Adapted from an Op-Ed in today’s NYTimes by Nicolas Kristof

Some fun facts about the AMA (American Medical Association):

  • supported segregation
  • opposed President Harry Truman’s plans for national health insurance
  • backed tobacco
  • denounced Medicare
  • opposed President Bill Clinton’s health reform plan
  • probably represent less than 25% of practicing physicians, most of which are specialists who dearly want to protect incomes from $250,000/year to over a million per year

Here is their current position on a National Insurance system:

“The introduction of a new public plan threatens to restrict patient choice by driving out private insurers.”

They might have been right about opposing Clinton’s freakish health care plan.  They should have shaped the medicare debate instead of obtusely opposing it, and you can be the judge on the whole segregation and tobacco thing.

I think for-profit medical insurance is morally wrong.  Insurers should not make more money than patients, and not doctors, either.  If you want to be available to help someone in a time of weakness and need…you shouldn’t make 20% returns on them until that time arises.

*Disclaimer:  The AMA is a putrid organization from the inside out (and hopefully will be obsolete in 10 years)…but they do have it right on tort reform.

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