One In Ten Doctors Expected To Stop Accepting Insurance

Doctor w no head(1)

Doctors have been moving away from Medicaid for a while now thanks to the federal government implementing price controls which result in doctors operating non-existent profit margins. Now, with Obamacare representing a federal take over of private insurance, many doctors are moving toward cash-only operations that won’t accept insurance at all.

Considering the looming doctor shortage, this isn’t good news for Medicare or Obamacare.

New data from a national survey of nearly 14,000 physicians conducted by physician staffing firm Merritt Hawkins for The Physicians Foundation, analyzing 2012 practice patterns, found that 9.6 percent of “practice owners” were planning to convert to concierge practices in the next one to three years.

The movement is across all medical disciplines with 6.8 percent of all physicians planning to stop taking insurance in favor of concierge-style medicine or so-called “direct primary care.”

“Physicians have been running for cover for several years now,” said Mark Smith, president of Merritt Hawkins. “There is a lot of uncertainty in health care now and the only certainty is there is a lot of talk about cutting physicians fees. One way to get out of it is to go off the grid.”

This is a rational, free-market response to government price controls. And, frankly, it’s a positive development for health care in America in general.

Concierge hospitals and clinics already in operation can provide patients with services far more cheaply than those accepting insurance thanks to the removal of insurance/government red tape. Illustrating perfectly that the problem with health care in America is government and third-party insurers distorting the relationship between service provider and service consumer.

Here’s a video from Reason about a concierge care hospital in Oklahoma that is quite illuminating:

Rob Port is the editor of In 2011 he was a finalist for the Watch Dog of the Year from the Sam Adams Alliance and winner of the Americans For Prosperity Award for Online Excellence. In 2013 the Washington Post named SAB one of the nation's top state-based political blogs, and named Rob one of the state's best political reporters.

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  • whowon

    Next they will approve veterinarians for senior care.

    • C. dog e. doG

      Isn’t that who takes care of Hillary?
      – C. dog

  • Kevin Flanagan

    They will be forced to provide care in Obama’s labor camps.

    • borborygmi

      YOu get the bunk next to 7.62

  • Thresherman

    Democrats will start calling them greedy and unpatriotic in 5, 4, 3…….

  • borborygmi

    Or 90 out of 100 DRs will or 900 out of 1000 will. I would be that 9 out of 10 is about the current rate. When they find out there aren’t that many well heeled clients out their they will come back . Scare tactics from Obama haters

    • borborygmi

      THis is an interesting approach and it is for mainly elective surgery and does not cover diagnostics. Major surgery such as heart isn’t performed at all. Cancer, stroke, major accident, not performed. It is interesting that the Drs. perform surgery at the surgical center and at the Main Hospital. I wonder why? It didn’t sound as if they minded getting a check from the main hospital.
      They did bring forth the tremendous amount of overhead in your typical large hospital especially the administrative end. I swear they have a VP for everything down to is your butt getting wipe appropriatly.

      “The prices listed are not negotiable and are available only to those who pay the entire amount in advance.” From the surgical center web site.
      Prices ranged from $2500 to $22,000 depending on procedure. It is for the well off. Some like myself and wife ,middle class , could pay out of pocket for the lower price procedures. $22,000 out of pocket, probably not. Even $8,000 out of pocket for a hysterectomy would be tough. There are a lot of people that would find $2500 a reach for a cast.
      This in no way eliminates the need for primary health insurance. I have a friend who had a heart transplant. He would not have been able to come up with the money needed to pay out of pocket well over a 1/2 million bucks. He has no job and his company provided health insurance would have run out by the end of this year if he didn/t get the transplant. He was lucky at least as lucky as someone needing a heart transplant can get.
      THe above center does nothing for those who don’t have health insurance because they couldn’t afford health insurance. If you are poor don’t get sick is the message sent.

      • borborygmi

        It is a niche market at its best and nothing more.

        • borborygmi

          Hmm 3 down. 3 more hating to live in the real world and hate it when they get smacked. Couldn’t expect anymore.

          • mickey_moussaoui

            We don’t expect you to actually READ the article little alone COMPREHEND what you read but it is talking about not accepting “MEDICADE” INSURANCE. not ALL insurance YOU DOPE!

            You just wasted everones time making Red Herring arguments about something that has nothing to do with the article. The “direct primary care” will continue to accept private insurance. Basically this is free market healthcare that is rejecting obamacare manipulation. Good for them.

            Boringbory, just shut up and stop making ignorant arguments for a change. Don’t worry, we wont forget you exist.

          • borborygmi

            One In Ten Doctors Expected To Stop Accepting Insurance: It is actually about concierge surgery. It is a niche market. It shouldn’t be stopped but the practice is limited to the well off as health care before insurance was. The Oklahoma Surgery Center lists the prices on their web site with the disclaimer that if you are going to use insurance the prices are different. My arguments are spot on. THis is a niche market and if you can afford out of pocket the prices for the procedures good for you. A lot of people cannot. THe market is limited thou and will not replace insurance, or medicare or medicaid. You did listen to the clip didn’t you? YOu did go to their web site didn’t to further investigate and substantiate didn’t you? I am pleased that you took the time to waste by reading my factual and logical arguments.
            It would be interesting to find out the avg income of the people using the service

    • sbark

      gosh……so your saying its the same tactic, that the Dem’cats are playing to implement gun control……….in that case a very minor segment (much less than 10%) gets victimized by predominalty dem’cat criminals…………and then 99.99999% of law abiding citizens have to pay by giving up actual rights….
      What the article fails to focus on is in additon to 10% not accepting Ins, many doctors who are anywhere close to retirment are going to take it, even in advance.
      all of a sudden a 25% cut in available doctors, and even much worse in rural N.Dak.

      • borborygmi

        Dr. like money and they aren’t going to give up $180,000 a year because of paper work. Son, why do you think Drs don’t set up a concierge program in Rural ND. Population my boy, Population. Now as far as hospitals go they want to get paid the same rate for services that other hospitals get. A cat scan machine costs X no matter what Area you are in (actually cost more for shipping in RUral ND) but the hospitals get reimbursed less because they are Rural.
        Concierge Care is a niche market. Good for them. They want to put the money up go for it.

        • JoeMN

          O care was supposed to provide the perfect bureaucratic fix for these doctor shortages

          In 2011, Medicare primary care physicians and general surgeons
          practicing in “shortage” areas will receive a 10 percent bonus payment.
          And primary care physicians participating in Medicaid will get no less
          than 100 percent of the Medicare payment rates for their services for
          2013 and 2014, with the federal taxpayer making up the difference
          between Medicaid funding and the higher Medicare payment rates. But
          there is a catch: There is no provision for continued federal taxpayer
          funding beyond these two years, so states will have to either increase
          their own Medicaid expenditures substantially or cut back their Medicaid
          physician payments.

          The Sustainable Growth Rate Formula

          Medicare physician payment is annually updated on the basis of
          the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) formula, which ties annual physician
          payment increases to the performance of the general economy. But every
          year, Congress passes the so-called “doc fix,” which overrules the SGR
          formula and keeps Medicare payments from falling to artificially low

          Under the SGR, without congressional intervention, the initial
          Medicare pay cut would amount to 21.3 percent. The impact is not hard to
          fathom. For example, the Fairfield County Medical Association in
          Connecticut reported that, if such cuts were to actually take effect, 41
          percent of county doctors would stop taking new Medicare patients, and
          nearly one out of four doctors would drop Medicare altogether.[4]

          The new law provides no SGR fix. Moreover, Congress has shown no
          inclination to fix the broken SGR formula without adding to the federal
          deficit rather than embracing fiscal discipline and embarking upon a
          genuine reform of the Medicare program.

  • Jeremiah Glosenger

    Unfortunately the government is shutting down the “free market” in healthcare. In many places they are blocking the opening of ambulatory surgery centers because they feel this is “robbing” good patients away from the hospitals with emergency departments (that accept Medicare) which obligates them to treat every patient that walks in the door (emergencies are interpreted by CMS to be anyone who purports to have pain). They won’t let you open something without getting a “certificate of need” from the government showing that existing hospitals aren’t sufficient to handle the patients in an area (and that it won’t hurt the profits of the traditional hospital). They do the same with radiology centers. I have a CT machine in my office which provides a great convenience to me and my patients; however, a fellow colleague in Michigan isn’t allowed to purchase one, because it would reduce the number of CT scans taken at the hospital (which provide about 10x the radiation as the in-office scanner).
    Family physicians that don’t accept insurance are able to cut huge overhead costs, spend more time with patients, focus on preventive medicine, and give all around better care with less stress. The office visits are remarkably less expensive to boot (about $50 vs. $120).

    • Dan

      I have been saying for some time that the way to “fix” the system is to break “it”…”it” being government intrusion into the doctor/patient relationship. The way I see it, and this in my OPINION (for all the liberals who’ll disagree with me), everyone should pay as they go (concierge care) and have catastrophic care insurance for those conditions/illnesses that would be financially crippling.

      But, of course, the liberals want someone ELSE to take care of them…personal responsibility isn’t resident on their list of priorities.

      • borborygmi

        You are lucky if you can come up with 2500 to 22000 for procedures at a drop of the hat. Congratulations. It would be interesting to see what the average income of people that pay as they go. THe lady getting the carpotunnel has her employer paying for it so the example isn’t even a personal responsibilty issue.
        No doubt because it will keep the insurance rate or possibly workmans comp down. It is a niche market and that is all. Please go the the Oklahoma Surgery Site (very well done) look at the procedures they do and figure out if you could afford them. THen give us your approximate income.

        • JoeMN

          So why are those procedures $2,500 to $22,000 anyway ?
          But of course the answer is even more government “intervention”

          • borborygmi

            What would you consider a fair price for a hysterectomy or any procedure.

          • JoeMN

            The same as what would be a “fair” price for a car, a laptop, or even food for that matter.
            What the market will bear.

          • borborygmi

            Then you have your answer,