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Doctors Take Umbrage at Physicians' Porsche Promo

Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media, November 4, 2010

Ok. But you've got to wonder. At a time when the healthcare industry is  focused on evaluating doctors on meaningful quality metrics—the latest CMS physician quality reporting system rules are final as of Wednesday—whatever were these Alvarado physicians thinking?

In my opinion, the article was not just in poor taste, but its timing couldn't have been worse. If the SGR goes through, many doctors say they will reject Medicare patients altogether, cut their staffs, or resign from practice entirely.

Sent a copy of the article, California Medical Association spokesman Andrew Lamar in Sacramento weighed in.

"It would be wrong to assume that Medicare rates are adequate, or could be cut, simply because some private doctors who either don't participate in the program or serve almost entirely patients on private insurance, make a good living," LaMar says.

"The bottom line is a 30% reduction [revised to 25%] in Medicare reimbursements would be devastating to physicians and force many to quit taking new Medicare patients or drop out of the program altogether just to stay economically viable. There is little doubt that, as a result, seniors would have a tougher time getting access to a doctor," LaMar says.

Maybe these Alvarado doctors think this was just a fun and harmless diversion, compared with the tough decisions they make every day about patient care. But I think if they had thought this through to any degree, they might have at least waited until if and when the SGR issue is settled once and for all.


Cheryl Clark is senior quality editor and California correspondent for HealthLeaders Media. She is a member of the Association of Health Care Journalists.
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9 comments on "Doctors Take Umbrage at Physicians' Porsche Promo"


Maria Hannegan (11/5/2010 at 7:13 PM)
I don't like the way the article portrays doctors who have the ability to buy sports cars. Dr. Pedram Salimpur went through many years of schooling and has always been a great doctor to my daughter. He is attentive, kind, and deserves to spend his hard earned money on whatever he chooses. He always takes personnel interest and personally follows up on her progress and well being no matter what time of day.

stacy (11/5/2010 at 2:29 PM)
Why should this reporter or any other person care what hobbies another person has or how someone spends their money. The Porsche articel was a fun article. It seems as if the article from the San Diego reporter was written in an attempt to stir up controversy where none exists. I guess the hobbies a few docotrs might have are more improtant than the flooding in Haiti or the elections that just passed. I would like to know in these difficult economic times who is allowed to have a nice car, go on vacation, go to the movies, or out to eat? Is it just doctors who should do none of the above? I guess when I am in the hospital today doing my 36 hour shift caring for patients, I can only think that the reporter who wrote this article has had a nice meal, has the luxury of being at home spending time with her family, and sleepign in her own comfortable bed.

Michael Murphy (11/5/2010 at 2:19 PM)
Why are all the negative comments just against Mazer? That guy is a backstabber and an idiot because he is a dr at the same hospital and is going on record against his colleagues. But Stewart Frank is just as much of a moron. Why would you be so stupid as to talk to a reporter about fellow doctors like this? have you no integrity at all?