Editor's note: We work hard to write about issues that will help physicians run their practices in a manner that is both prosperous and efficient, while still delivering quality patient care. And we are delighted when our readers let us know what they are thinking. This month we excerpt from a slideshow on potential changes for medicine and the locums tenens experience. The articles have been edited for space and are followed by comments made by readers at PhysiciansPractice.com.
Physicians — and all practitioners, for that matter — are not shy when it comes to expressing their opinion on the healthcare industry. The Great American Physician Survey is proof that physicians have outspoken opinions on work-life balance, healthcare reform, and much more. But what if they could only change one singular thing bothers them about medicine? There's a lot to choose from.
Michael says: Get rid of for-profit health insurance companies.
Mayte replied: Then there [will be] no companies left and only [a] government system with politicians influencing what happens. Seems to be problematic. I think more choices and more types of insurance would work best.
Leann replied: YES! And take away not-for-profit status for any organization that pays any individual more than 20 times minimum wage (above that is a profit, not a standard living.)
David says: I would remove everything in health care that does not need to be under insurance...
Direct primary care, urgent care, hydration therapy, minor surgical procedures, some path, some X-ray, etc. Those things could be placed in the free market system and prices would go down and patients would KNOW what things cost!
Donna says: Remove the government from patient care. Reporting required to receive reimbursements has become the center of a patient visit. Return to patient/doctors visit instead of point and click visit. Place controls on commercial insurers regarding premium increases and millions of dollars going to their CEOs, COOs, etc.
Dennis says: End the for-profit insurance industry as we know it. This entity is a parasite on healthcare, it sucks millions of healthcare dollars into its coffers, pays CEOs $20 million annually and makes our daily lives miserable. They contribute nothing to healthcare. Our health care is far too important to be in the hands of politicians. Let us have a single payer system managed by independent, experienced, professionals with no political ties. Does anyone see any other country copying our failed system?
One of the most enjoyable things I do at work is interact with the physicians that we help place in jobs. We recently had a group of relatively new physicians visit our office, all of whom had just finished their residencies within the past few years. While they were working as full-time physicians, they also worked locum tenens to some degree or another and I enjoyed the opportunity to hear about some of their experiences.
Jude says: Wow, I must have the worst luck with locums jobs. I have been at jobs where I was threatened, feared malpractice lawsuit due to ineptitude of the practitioners and hospital staff (including the demands of the administration), and the sheer incompetency of the locums staff have left me wondering why the hell I went into medicine. I only look at locums as a last resort and to do in a position of desperation.
Nick says: Agree. When I was a practice administrator interviewing physicians, we would welcome those candidates with locums experience because they have seen a lot and often have insights to bring to private practice. Additionally, I always tell physicians in training that if they are not sure of a geographic location or specific setting as a permanent job, they should start as a locum because they get to travel and see a variety of settings as well as learn a lot along the way…..and then they can choose where to settle down.