|Thinking About Health|
|Written by Trudy Lieberman, Rural Health News Service|
Who comes between you and your doctor?
How many times have you heard politicians say that no bureaucrat should come between you and your doctor? You and your physician should decide when you need to go to the hospital or when you might want to wait out that cold before taking an antibiotic. At least that’s been the American ideal of the doctor-patient relationship.
The reality is something very different. We are reaching a crossroads in this country in terms of physician autonomy, says Dr. Luis Collar, who writes on the blog KevinMD.com.
In an essay a couple of weeks ago, he wrote: “Despite the foul smog of competing interests that permeate this new delivery paradigm, one thing is clear—physicians are no longer calling the shots.” Collar is talking mainly about insurance companies and hospital administrators that are dictating what physicians can and cannot do.
Increasingly, we are waking up to that realization. For me, it’s been happening at the pharmacy, where a kind of rationing is taking place in how much medicine people can get at one time.
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