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After SCOTUS Healthcare Ruling, No Middle Ground Will Remain

Joe Cantlupe, for HealthLeaders Media, June 14, 2012

The Supreme Court is expected to decide the constitutionality of the individual mandate, which also impacts other provisions of the law, including a requirement health insurance companies provide insurance coverage for those with pre-existing conditions. Disagreements are reflected in internal polling of the physicians group, in which 19% showed they wanted a complete rejection of the law, and—at the other end of the spectrum—18% didn't believe it "went far enough" in insurance coverage.

"The (individual) mandate is the one piece that people legitimately have fundamental differences of opinion (about)," Stream says. "The other provisions, I think, pale in comparison. But our policy for 20 years is that everyone should have access to health insurance coverage of some kind. I have not seen anybody making a convincing argument that you can get everybody covered, without a mandate. Is a mandate the ideal thing? No."

So what happens if the Supreme Court doesn't touch the law, or just overturns a few sections, and not the individual mandate? With so many more physicians opposing the law, there is certainly going to be more disappointment spread around.  For some older doctors who hope the Supreme Court strikes down the measure, a court decision to uphold it means they will exit the world of being a provider that much sooner.

Hal Scherz, MD, a 57-year-old urologist in Georgia, who founded an organization Docs4 Patient Care, in part, to fight the law, is adamant that the high court's approval would be a turning point in his career. "My time horizon will truncate," he says, noting that he would quit the profession sooner than he would have anticipated. 

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5 comments on "After SCOTUS Healthcare Ruling, No Middle Ground Will Remain"


pplemmons (6/19/2012 at 2:17 PM)
I beg to differ with my friend Joe Tye. How can the mandate be construed as taking personal responsibility when individuals are being compelled by the government? This is a complete contradiction. The mandate is reason enough to reject the law, but it is also larded with features that take a giant step toward government control over private health decisions. I for one do not want to cede my constitutional freedoms to apparatchiks in Washington, D.C.

joe (6/18/2012 at 9:27 AM)
"Whether it's real or not, I think they feel they don't want more government control." What an interesting comment by a supposedly 'educated' physician...I wonder if the good doctor prefers having the insurance companies having MORE control over his practice? srsly the ignorance of some people is hard to understand

kakistocraphobe (6/15/2012 at 10:20 AM)
Tyco, perhaps some doctors actually care whether Congress is passing unconstitutional laws, regardless of their pocketbooks. That would actually be a very mature position.