Thomasville doctor reacts to health care bill passage -, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Thomasville doctor reacts to health care bill passage

By LeiLani Golden - bio | email

THOMASVILLE, GA (WALB) – Thomasville has one of the largest concentrations of physicians in Georgia and they have strong opinions about the health care reform bill.

A lot of them say they're worried about the effects the reform will have on their industry.

Thomasville dermatologist Dr. Dan Mitchell says it's hard to justify social health care when other social programs are failing.

"We have social security that's going to be bottoming out shortly. Medicare is under increasing constraints. The 21% cut that was just enacted. I just don't see how we can do more and more with less and less."

One of his biggest fears is the possibility of even more rules, regulations, and documentation that will keep physicians from doing their primary job: helping sick people get better.

"I went to the U.S. Naval Academy and was there for four years, went to med school, internship and training for three years, and I can't recall anything that I studied that was more complex than the medicare coding system. And not only is it difficult to understand, we work under penalty of going to jail if we get it wrong."

He's not alone in his fears. Mitchell was just one of several physicians in Thomasville who rallied against the bill outside Sanford Bishop's office last week.

To his knowledge, Dr. Mitchell said all fourteen doctors in the McIntosh clinic are against the health care reform bill.

When asked if there was anything in this bill he liked...

"I'm not aware of anything. I suspect in 2000 pages there's got to be something I like, but I don't know about it."

Like it or not, it's about to become law. President Obama is expected to sign it into law Tuesday.

Many doctors do support the health care reform bill. The American Medical Association endorsed it.

The marketing director at Archbold Memorial Hospital in Thomasville told us several physicians there left the AMA because of that endorsement.

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