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Can You Hear It?

so called health care reformIs it just my own deafness, or is there a crushing silence about the impact of the health care reform bill on chiropractors that was recently pushed through Congress?

By now, you’d think that supporters of the legislation within chiropractic would be crowing from the rooftops about how the government “saved” chiropractic by extending chiropractic benefits to millions. Similarly, by now you’d think that detractors of this new burdensome entitlement would extol the benefits of being excluded from it, celebrating the freedom to practice true chiropractic without Uncle Sam looking over their shoulder.

But we’ve heard nothing.

Why?

Comments (4)

I don't think anyone knows how this will affect chiropractic yet, that is why you have not heard anything. It seems that there are some things that we do know.

1.It looks as if the feds will subcontract the insurance game to insurance companies-- and will start regulating them more closely. The insurance companies will continue to do what they do-- there may be chiropractic included on the plans that they sell or there may not, but they will not be forced to include chiropractic on their plans.
2.People will be required to buy health insurance, so there will be some very low cost, low quality plans offered by the insurance companies to fill this requirement (they will still profit from these cheap plans).
3.Insurance companies are going to start requesting more records for payment on care because they have learned that for every dollar spent auditing doctors they get hundreds returned to them. This will continue until they realize that there are no more quality doctors that are willing to take the chance that they will be audited--- the only doctors left willing to accept insurance will be the paper pushers that are more concerned with the paperwork than getting patients better. This will result in a lower quality health care across the board, not just in chiropractic.
4. Doctors are being "encoraged" to switch to electoronic records that communicate with the government servers-- why? to make it easier to review health records why? sold as a great way to transfer records to another doctor and be green is just a shiny wrapper on the government and insurance companies auditing doctors to see if they can find a reason to deny payment, or to inspect patient files for whatever reason they feel is in the public safety (homeland secuity), and who cares if the patient wants the care or needs the care we want to make sure all the t's are crossed and i's dotted.

We do not know if chiropractors can "Opt out" of the system. It looks like we will be able to have the option, so that if things go really crazy we can choose to practice in a way that will benifit the public the most and empower patients to choose wellness care rather than having that right taken away from them by the government deciding that you as a chiropractor are not allowed to deliver wellness care on risk of imprisonment or fines.

The real question is: "Does the public care enough about chiropractic to demand it en masse if it ever gets taken away from them?"

The bottom line is that, at least at first for chiropractic, things will continue as they are right now.

It is most definitely a mixed bag. Since the trend is to not pay for anything, the future does not bode well if we are expecting any reimbursement, let alone an audit asking for it back!

We can only hope that we are 'installed' as THE doctors to be seen for prevention and wellness. That is where we can truly shine.

Maybe shock, disbelief? Maybe it's so big and unruly nobody really knows what it will mean to chiropractors. Maybe we see the writing on the wall and realize whatever we thought of some sort of national health-care we'll be either pushed out overtly or through ever increasing co-pays and deductibles. The future seems to be cash, except of course for Medicare patients where its one of Red Ink. Unless of course we get lucky and they kick us out of that altogether! Un-Participating anyone?

Tony Russo:

Why you say?
Because it will not help us in the long run. You recount the story of the astute farmer who wanted to raise wild boar. So he put out free corn in the middle of his field. And they came every night to feast on free corn, yumm. Then he intalled a straight fence, later adding one side, then the opposite side, and then finally he closed the fence in and ate wild boar all year. They became dependent on the free corn(National Health Care). It happened here in our Province. They gave it to us...and then they took it away. Notable effects, quite notable...for those of us who will admit it.

Good luck my friends,
Tony

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From April 6, 2010 5:40 PM

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