Archive for the ‘Dr Pat’s Corner’ category

THE PROGNOSIS OF GOVERNMENT AND SPECIAL INTEREST HEALTH CARE

December 6th, 2016

Patrick Wagner, MD

The prognosis of government and special interest health care is summed up in one word, and that word is grim.  But for both doctor and patient, this is good news, because now we can forge ahead in a relationship wherein both parties will calmly and caringly profit from the inconvenient yet inevitable experience when it becomes our turn.

For those “comfortable” doctors and patients who find security in our present sick health care system, are you ever in for a surprise!

Let’s look at some features of the future of American medicine for “comfortable” doctors and follow with features of the future for “comfortable” patients.

Doctor, you are about to start “busting it” or you simply won’t last in this business.  There are many young stallions out there in America aspiring to an extraordinary career who will not be bridled by our present day academic, wimpy special interest teachers and settle for a mediocre job working for somebody other than a patient!  When again given the opportunity by the patients to excel during their training experience the way they must in order to cut the umbilical cord and become strong and self-confident independent clinicians, we shall see what fierce competition can do, even to the teachers of medicine and the burned out old timers still slaving for the system.

Another lesson we have learned from the temporary overthrow of the free market system of American medicine is that of a “business sense”.   A medical business is not a ministry and a good and ethical doctor is in business as a competitor.  Although doctors naturally treat patients with every bit of tenacity and T.L.C. they can muster if motivated, and do so tirelessly, they must be paid for their efforts, and respected by those they serve.  After all, even doctors have bills to pay and appreciate compliments for a job well done.

And now for you patients out there who are fairly “comfortable” in allowing our wayward government bureaucrats and special interest to take care of you as opposed to taking care of yourself.  You as well will start “busting it”, and if you don’t have any savings other than Social Security and Medicare, you will have to liquidate assets to pay for medical service or get a job or have somebody in your family front you, because you will need cash.  You’ve known your whole life that this day was coming and that Social Security and Medicare were never meant to supplant personal savings, personally purchased catastrophic medical insurance or personal pensions.  And if you truly want high quality, competitive, affordable, compassionate, readily available medical care from qualified, competitive medical professionals, you’ll have to pay for it like everybody else in the free market system or simply remain stingy and put up with the mediocre medical system you believe in now, and be treated accordingly for as long as that pathetic system lasts.

Although it might not be possible to completely do away with government assistance for the able bodied “disabled”, it sure will be nice to be rid of fraud and a lot of our selfish citizens out there.  How is it possible to get rid of our fraud problem?  The answer is simple.  Doctors are changing and becoming competitive and honest again, and working for patients, not bureaucrats.  The nitch of “disability doctor” is going away!  Isn’t it wonderful to recognize the power of the free market?

Also recognize that Americans always provide charity for the truly disabled.  It’s in our DNA, and it’s giving without expecting anything back, unlike the “charity” of bureaucracy which does expect something back; a lot back.

In summary, the free market and fierce, killer competition is the driving force of successful commerce, and parasites are not welcome.  The prognosis of government and special interest health care is grim, but the prognosis of free enterprise medicine and competition and energy and the attendant good will of Americans with a common goal is bright indeed!

Fasten your seat belts and get ready, because here it comes, and all Americans are going to be glad.  All Americans.

The Patient Comes First

November 25th, 2016

Patrick Wagner, MD

Four simple little words summarize the Hippocratic Oath, the guiding light of the medical profession.  Those words are…”The patient comes first”.

The American people, by peacefully electing Donald J. Trump as the 45th President, have made that statement, namely…”The patient comes first”.  President-elect Trump hears the people and has forwarded the message.  Obamacare has been delivered a death blow in favor of a system called fee for service private practice medicine.

This whole thing is all about contracts, and living up to the required performance and timeliness of that performance, and the quality of the product and affordability of that product, and about goodwill.

When my youngest son, who is now in medical school was in grammar school, the teachers devised a clever system of reward called duck-bucks, along with reading, writing and arithmetic.  The kids loved it.  My boy would come home and add more and more duck bucks to the shoe box in his room.  It looked like money, but had ducks in the place of presidents and founders.

In the end, when it came time to cash in the duck-bucks and go out and buy something, he forgot all about that shoebox full of duck-bucks.  What a great kind and now young man he turned out to be!  His mom and I are proud of him and his amazing brother and sister as well.

Our government has issued duck-bucks for a long time now, a kind of an “unfunded promise” or unfunded liability.  Old Uncle Sam is trying to pay docs with duck-bucks, and duck-bucks don’t work.  They aren’t worth the paper they are printed on.

So our dear doctor friends at the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (aapsonline.org) have been hard at it in developing a system of medical care called private practice.  Their motto is…”The patient comes first”.  The important thing to note here is that the means of exchange is U.S. currency.  Real dollars for real service.  It’s called cash.

What does cash deliver?  It delivers Compassion.  It delivers Affordability.  It delivers Safety.  It delivers Honor (C-A-S-H).  All you have to do is set the fee, and operate as a Free Enterprise Establishment (F-E-E).  Indeed, it’s what the doctor has wanted all along…”The patient comes first”.

With this system, there is no fear, because there is no unfunded promise.  It’s simple, because cash delivers, and there isn’t any scheme to steal the profit from doctor and patient.

Get used to it folks, the American people have spoken, and as promised by President-elect Donald J. Trump, just watch what free enterprise is going to do for the amazing people of America.  God Bless!  And thank Holy God for Americans!

The Handwriting Is On The Wall

November 3rd, 2016

Dr. Patrick Wagner

It is amazing, being a retired general surgeon for over 10 years , seeing the opening of the eyes of the public as we begin to recognize the wary conduct of the American medical profession.

People have been curious to know just why I quit my practice prematurely and I have told them through the years everything I possibly could without making them think I am a raging maniac.   It reminds me of when the important and caring time came when I used to describe the rationale, risk and alternatives about major operations to my patients, the so called informed consent.  If done artistically, which it always was, that patient trusted me and signed the dotted line.  The last thing an ethical doctor would do is scare a patient, as you would never perform an operation!  That artistry was fueled by self-confidence, character, the golden rule and experience.  It’s simple.  Just be a nice and caring guy and do the best you can for the patient, every single time.  It’s about reputation and it keeps you as busy and motivated as you want to be.

In these question and answer sessions with concerned people, the one thing they invariably ask is….”Why can’t it be like it used to be?  I get sick, I go to my doctor, I get well with his help, and I pay him.”  Exactly!!

In a neat, short, easy to read, and exactly correct little book, called “Common Sense Medicine”, by author Jeff Danby, and published by the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, or AAPS, Mr. Danby hits the nail on the head when he describes a process called “regulatory capture”, wherein a third party intruder of the doctor/patient relationship (the government bureaucrat) must rely on the “dark side doctor” and crooked special interest health maintenance organization, to super-regulate private practice doctors for the bottom line shrewd “return on investment”, or profiteering at the expense of sick people and those dedicated to helping them.  A huge complicated and corrupt mess occurs, which is precisely what we have now.

These are the features that ruined my practice of surgery in the early 1990’s in Sacramento.  Why didn’t doctors revolt?  It’s because of the perception fed to the public that doctors are greedy and careless.  It was and remains impossible to fight that attack, the attack of ambulance chasing lawyers and their conquered victim ignorant physicians.  Doctors don’t understand the simple free enterprise principles of constitutionally provided commerce.  However, hospital systems have weathered this storm because they went to the dark side like the pathetic few medical doctors did who ruined my profession.

As Mr. Danby points out, industry insiders end up “tweaking” the government rules, and the regulatory mess is so ridiculous that it falls, and all of the people of America lose out to evil.

Now we have the evidence that Obamacare is not doable from an economic standpoint.  To re-distribute wealth and at the same time regulate production out of existence is not feasible.  The spirit of a physician is killed. The spirit of a patient is killed.  The greedy thief gains the spoil and those they rule lose.  How cruel is that?

I must scare you into reality, because you face disease without doctors now.  Sure, you go to the health care provider, but that provider doesn’t understand what it takes to make you better.  Said another way, the skyrocketing cost of “health care insurance” is inversely proportional to the availability and quality of those helping you now.  Every increase dollar you now pay is one dollar into the pocket of a thief, and your fiscal access to safe, effective, and caring medical treatment is proportionately lost.

My recommendation (prescription), as one who knows exactly what’s going on, and who wants your best, is to read the book “Common Sense Medicine”, by Jeff Danby, published by the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS).  The AAPS is reachable at aapsonline.org.  Do it today for the truth about the exact solution to our failing health care system.  Petition universities to become unshackled from government regulation, including post-graduate institutions like medical schools.  We want good doctors again, not “health care providers”.

It’s not me who’s a lunatic, it’s Obama and the radical liberal progressive regime.  The handwriting is on the wall.  I hope I have scared you straight, because that’s what you need now.

 

Solo Private Practice

October 20th, 2016

Patrick Wagner, MD

The most important question asked of every pre-med student at the time he or she applies for medical school is…”Why do you want to become a doctor?”  The sincere answer to that question simplifies the selection process, and those prospective “doctors” who answer it best are granted admittance to medical school.   Nowadays, following admittance, the prospective doctor is taught by the educators how to work for the system, not necessarily for the patient.

It would be well to ask what kind of doctor you want as you watch your traditional medical profession fall apart and evolve into the pathetic health care system you pay for today.  A good question to ask here is:  Am I paying for medical care or a huge bureaucracy that is squandering my hard earned money?  We are now at a time in American history when we must choose a one on one solo private practice doctor who cares about you, the patient, or have a social public practice health care worker chosen for you who doesn’t care about you, the patient.  They care about pleasing their employer so they will get paid, and they are not adequately trained, and it’s irrelevant to them.

Let me share a little secret, based on my education, experience and exit from my previous vocation as a solo private practice general surgeon.  To be a surgeon turned out to be a tremendously rewarding profession that I would have never traded for anything in the world.  But as I experienced my career, many obstacles got in my way which ultimately made me stop.  It is quite enough to learn “normal” human and then “diseased” human, and to practice compassionate diagnosis and treatment of sick humans.  After all, the writings of Hippocrates from 400 B.C. characterize the stress laid on treatment and prognosis.  That’s the secret, namely that a well-trained physician has enough on his plate with the intensely responsible job of caring for his patients.  That is plenty.  Anything more is degrading, and is heaped on slave labor.  That’s not why I chose to be a surgeon.

Based on the obstacles mentioned above, I can define the physician’s birthright, namely “inward rest and outward victory”.  Here is why I am a doctor.  It is for the privilege to serve each and every patient with the highest quality, most affordable, most efficient and safest medical and surgical techniques possible to achieve the recovery anticipated from the diseases they are inflicted with, and with strict attention to detail.  Patients never cease to be relieved and glad when a disease leaves them.  Neither was I.  It’s everything.

Running a business is second nature when a doctor finally recognizes that he has got to have a business sense.  It is basic and simple compared to the myriad important decisions he must make in taking care of his patients.  It is now clear that the doctor needs the intelligence to avoid the pitfall of any third party industry, the patient being the sole administrator of his service.  Simple concept, simple conduct, simple contract, but oh so important!

Doctors are not cowards.  They are slaves.  Folks tell me that those doctors who have acquiesced into their dismal position could have gotten out.  Wrong!

Doctors don’t fight (except disease), they heal!  They do not destroy!  Remember the medics of World War II?  If a doctor, now controlled by someone other than a patient, fails his owner, he loses his job.  A doctor rationalizes his position, saying…”The patients deserve what they are getting.  The people want the bureaucrat, so that’s what they get! “

Doctors work not because they are motivated to help the patients, but since they have no skill in any other trade and with such a huge investment of their lives into their education, they become desperate, devalued, and motivated to do exactly what they are  told to do, which doesn’t include putting the patient first.  They care for their fiend of a boss only. So who’s the coward?  Who’s the bully?  Is it the patient or the doctor?  Look into your heart carefully when answering this question! 

Solo private practice means one patient, one doctor, one servant, one boss.  That is plenty.  It’s even more specific and personal and private than a “group” or partnership of physicians in private practice.  All of the obstacles, the drama, the theft, the hierarchy of positions in the partnership, and all personal ambitions are crushed and eliminated, because all business deals get messy. The lies cease and the truth begins, one doctor and one patient at a time; no chaff!

At any given time in history, you deserve the kind of doctor you have, ie. you choose a competitive doctor or allow someone else to assign you a noncompetitive one.  It is now time to choose, and it is a serious choice.  If you want to keep your system you can keep your system.  And if you want to keep your health insurance you can keep it.  If you want better, you must change it, because the present system is failing you miserably.  Your decisions define your character and your destiny.

American medicine evolved from a fee for service private practice, free enterprise system via several steps into what it is today.  The problems began with Medicare, evolved into managed care when Hillary tried Hillarycare but failed, evolved into Obamacare as a piling on of Hillarycare in the ongoing name of special interest ACA compliant “health insurance”, and now threatens to end up with universal health care (government dictated health care), which is what the crooked fiends wanted all along!  Even Bill Clinton himself, the president that allowed Hillary’s mischief during the first term of his administration, says Obamacare is a loser.  The final step is “Killarycare”, or gross negligence.

In other countries that have government run health care, deciding which medical procedures and drugs the government will pay for and will not pay for, is what takes up the majority of the legislators’ time and effort.  Knowing our present political system, do you really want to turn your health…. yes I will say it again, do you really want to turn your health over to politicians and government bureaucrats?

Once the system is in place, it will prove almost impossible to eliminate it and go back to the private practice of medicine!  What you will end up with is a two tiered system.  Those few who can afford to pay for private practice medicine will enjoy far superior medical care over those who cannot afford to pay for private medicine.  Talk about that “one percent” of elites!   

The truth is that government run health care has to be stopped before it starts, because when you get sick of it and from it, you will want your doctors to come home.  You will again “seek out” your doctors without a middleman.   They will join you.

  • Question is, how long do you want to “feel the pain”?
  • Will there be a sufficient number of well trained and dedicated doctors still available?

Confession of a Surgeon

October 6th, 2016

Dr. Patrick Wagner

 

It has been my opinion since quitting my vocation as a general surgeon, that doctors suffer from burnout, and are slaves to the destructive forces of government/special interest administrators (bureaucrats) in the conduct of the healing art.

Lies now govern the conduct of a physician, and yet no physician still in practice will admit it.  Upon quitting, not until I went through my time of bitterness, jealousy and envy, and felt the pain of obscurity and devaluation, was I able to “let it go”.  Many, many of my colleagues did not have that opportunity.  Thus, it is time for the confession of a surgeon.

Doctors now work for a paycheck, not for a patient.   They serve themselves, not those they promise to serve in their training.  “Do no harm” has been replaced by “Do what you need to do to get paid”.

Remember doctors are patients too and having experienced and mastered the art of medicine, all patients (including me) become emotional when we get sick.  All wise and compassionate doctors understand this fact.   Then is when caring for emotions becomes critical for proper healing.  If one doesn’t know how to care for a patient’s emotions, patients also burn out and become skeptical and fearful.  The doctor/patient contract is breached.

When attempting to clarify these points to the purveyors of a third party system, I have been called both a gutless coward and unethical, and dismissed for the attempt.  All doctors are labelled as cowards now, unless they acquiesce to control of third party payers, and pay attention to the rules.  Then, they are showcased as perfect little health care providers.  Doctors accept the curse or lose their job!

Why?  Doctors are only human.   They conform to a lie, a belief that language and action which could offend political or religious or other social sensitivities, should be eliminated.  This pattern is fueled by lawless opportunistic fools who pitch the lies and gain more and more power and influence over our trust and belief in each other, both doctor and patient, replacing it with trust and belief in them.  All of this by design.   And in the end in our fogginess, anger and bitterness betray our ability to reason and to sort out why we feel the way we feel as we become trapped in a bad contract.

This third party is a bad partner.  He has not entered the contract in good faith.  He has provided misleading information and has taken profoundly unusual and dangerous risks.  Our new and bad partner, of both doctor and patient, has used his opportunity to gain wealth by fraudulently acting contrary to our ethical standards, thus destroying our coveted resource of healing and stealing and coveting and squandering our hard earned money, our skills and judgment, our morals, and our sacred friendship.

What is the result for both physician and patient?  Rationing of unaffordable “health care” by incompetent slaves.  Neither the doctor nor the patient is definable in a commercial action now.  Can you imagine being operated on by a person who doesn’t know what he is doing?  Can you imagine not being paid by a fool who thinks your work isn’t worthy of pay?  That is third world.  The patient gets no “bang for his buck” and the doctor gets no “buck for his bang”.

I confess that I have stood by and painstakingly (and without recourse) watched the destruction of the medical profession, having escaped it and having moved on to another vocation which is “still” reasonable, but under attack.  That’s right, under attack.  Isn’t all business under attack now?  Yes, now I speak up, and I tell you that you and I must now negotiate our doctor/patient contract again.  Are you not feeling afraid and hopeless now?

Doctors are created and trained to remove disease. When a person contracts a disease, he becomes a patient, no longer in control of his life.  He must rely on the doctor, not a bureaucratic robot, to replace that feeling with a feeling of hope, and regain complete control of his life.  A government or special interest bureaucracy cannot bring humanness and hope.  It cannot care for human emotion.

These are the laws of nature and of God and as we are witnessing, they cannot be violated without dire consequences.  We must now eliminate the fraud and cease acquiescence to political hacks, both doctors and patients alike, and start caring for each other once again without the parasitic and life killing bureaucracy.  We must restore affordability, comfort and safety to our contract.

How?  I recently read a short little powerful book published by the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS) aapsonline.orgcalled “Common Sense Medicine”, by author Jeff Danby (not a doctor, but a real smart guy).  In it, Mr. Danby defines the essence of the doctor/patient relationship, the political hack that has destroyed it, and the solutions in transforming the mess of “health care” insurance into an ethical, efficient, safe and affordable system of the delivery of the best medical care in the world.  A must read for everyone in America.  You need to know the secret in order to fix the problem.  The good news?  We’re underway!

 

Privacy and Hypocrisy

September 8th, 2016

Patrick Wagner, MD

It is said that regarding Obamacare, the big shot senators and representatives and other elites in government are exempt from the financial, and all other, burdens of the law.  “They should have to suffer like the rest of us” is the plea.

Of recent, the health and stamina of Hillary Clinton is under question.  “Is she physically fit enough to do the job?  She has a sketchy past medical history, and she might become tired or suffer a stroke or even die.

It is sworn in the Hippocratic Oath, in the 6th covenant, that “whatsoever I (the physician) shall see or hear in regard to the life of my patients I will keep inviolably in confidence even beyond the patient’s death”.  Any of the six covenants can be translated to say….”The patient comes first”.  Or, “Do no harm”.

So for a personal doctor of Hillary Clinton to blab her medical history to the public or for any other physician to editorialize her medical history without having examined her, is a breach of that doctor’s responsibility to his/her patient.  The only exception would be if the doctor were being tried by an officer of the court.

The consequences for Hillary could be devastating, as you might imagine.  That’s why anyone protecting her conduct, statements and decisions would clarify for an aggressive trier just exactly why her privacy is protected.  It’s because the business of a doctor and his/her patient is private, exactly as the Oath demands.

Enter the year 1996, when Congress passed HIPAA, or the “Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act”.  The bill was signed into law by then president William Jefferson Clinton, the husband of Hillary.

Portability, accountability (an actuarial term) and “socializing” of the private fiscal and medical facts about American citizens by making them public is a breach of the Hippocratic Oath by every single physician in America who participates in one way or the other with Obamacare.

Just think of it, your personal secrets, both financial and medical, are now out there for anybody in America, and via electronic medical records and the internet, anyone in the world to see!

So in the end, privacy protects Hillary!  This should surprise no one because after all Hillary is part of the protected class!   That’s why “We The People” must now deal with it, and repeal Obamacare, and make medicine private, not just for the protected class but for everyone.  That’s the only fighting chance we have.  That’s why we must again make the playing field level and stop pampering our elected officials, and watch over them and keep them honest and replace them regularly with oath sworn patriots who are willing to protect our freedom, and to temporarily enter the government world and “politic” as a sacrifice, kind of like jury duty; a civic duty to protect and preserve our blessed Constitution and Declaration of Independence.

We must once again insist that our Hippocratic Oath sworn partner, the doctor, pay attention to his/her oath.  We The People must now provide “Private Practice Medicine”!

A Better Way

August 25th, 2016

Dr. Patrick Wagner

 

DOCTOR AND PATIENT CONTROLLED MEDICINE

For both doctor and patient, the primary goal is accurate, effective and prompt medical service.  For the patient, the reasons are obvious, but for the doctor, the objectives have been distorted to the extreme, such that there is now no economic initiative to draw hopefuls into the profession. Doctors are just like everyone else.  We all want to get ahead financially and when we find a vocation suited to us, it’s like a dream.

For myself, the difference between how I did my business compared to how it’s done today is literally the difference between night and day.  The changes for the worse in morality, effectiveness, affordability, accuracy, and accessibility in the conduct of medicine forced me to cut my career short by about seven years.  Since leaving, it’s only grown worse yet, and my sole objective in speaking up is to help both doctor and patient correct a distinct wrong.

The two primary factors that made me leave the practice of medicine were:

  1. Immoral and dangerous regulation of my skills and judgment
  2. Anemic payment such that I could not profit and live the American dream any longer.

That dream was to be proud of my life’s work and to have enough money saved up to enjoy a comfortable lifestyle and to die before that money ran out, and hopefully have a little remaining to give to my family.  No one believes me when I state these facts to them.  Also, it’s not too much to ask of the medical profession to treat my family, including my fellow physicians and I, the way I (we) treated all of the patients under my (our) care.  It’s the golden rule.

How do we establish a doctor and patient controlled medical system?  There are so many confusing and corrupt lies and policies in our face today that no one can push back.  So let’s get back and go home to the radical basics of business and constructively scrutinize the problem and establish a solution!

A doctor is a very simple person who knows a very large amount about human beings, the diseases we contract, and how to get rid of them.  Thus doctors are extremely valuable to society.

However, when it comes to many other important matters in life, like how to rear a child or how to run a business, or why one needs to be politically savvy and involved, they are novices.  They were and are vulnerable.

For me to be qualified as a general surgeon took 16 years after high school.  Every second of that education was of profound value for when I entered practice.  Not until I hung my shingle after those years did I begin to actually experience the practice of medicine and surgery, and the business world and risk.  Preparation for business is one thing, experiencing it is another!

Running a business is very basic and very liberating.  I work, I get paid, I pay my taxes, and spend and save as I see fit.  A doctor needs to know these things.  You must watch your overhead, your expenses and your requirement to profit, and you must be vigilant for any violation of these values.  We are finding out that doctors must protect their businesses in order to protect their patients!

A patient must look at getting sick the same way.  If you don’t work, you don’t eat, you don’t have shelter, and you can’t pay doctors, so it’s vital to save up money for when you do get sick.  That way, you get healthy as soon as possible, and get back to work and thus free-thinking to earn and spend money as you see fit.

How do we achieve these straightforward and essential goals?

First, doctors must advertise their fee and be available and demand cash for their services and live up to accountability.  

This cuts out the middleman, thus freeing doctors from dangerous regulations which restrict their decision making power in the exercise of their judgment and skills, while at the same time enhancing their ability to profit from their work.

These changes truly will produce affordable care and patient protection, the “private practice medicine patient protection and affordable care act”, the chief executive officer of which is “We The People”.   

I ask, is there a law which prohibits such activity?  The answer is no.  When one gets sick, and can readily and reliably find and choose a competitive and qualified physician and be willing to pay a competitive and reasonable price for excellent service, the system makes crystal clear sense and it works beautifully and shines like a jewel.  Word gets around.

The concept of a tax exempt health savings account is a basic and fundamental second goal.  

People must recognize that if you don’t pay doctors dollars for service, one to one, we will continue to go down the road we are going down.  Would health savings accounts be against the law?  The answer is no.  All we have to do is make it a law and watch it work.  It is exhilarating!

Private practice medicine approved competitive and stringently accountable catastrophic medical insurance is a third fundamental goal.  

Pay the claim for services rendered, no price controls or price fixing outside of the arrangement between a doctor and a patient, without any administrative function whatsoever in that private relationship.

So there we have it.  Business 101 for the novice doctor and for the typical uninformed  American citizen of today.  The opportunity is endless.  Just think of what a competitive, non regulated fee for service hospital will be like!  Selfish spirits quickly unite and transform into selfless spirits!  No more middleman.

Responsibility is vital in this essential, lifesaving and career producing system we call the art of medicine.  It is now critical for the doctor and patient controlled system to mushroom into a refreshing change for all concerned.  Why don’t we get to work and make it happen?  A beautiful, new and completely liberating thing, right around the corner.  You can put your money on that one!

 

Who gets the best medical care?

August 18th, 2016

Dr. Patrick Wagner

 

HEALTH CARE AT ITS BEST

What happens when your dog, your cat or your horse gets sick?  Right, you take ‘em to the vet (or bring the vet to them, a “ranch call”).  I doubt there is a long wait time, and the vet and his/her crew get right after it and make a diagnosis and treatment plan for your perusal.

Not being an animal owner, I understand that the vet’s bill can range from $50-$75 for a wellness check to $5,000.00 to extract a cancer, plus or minus chemotherapy.  A bad dog bite might cost $2,000.00, including sewing up the wounds, feeding, helping the dog get moving again, pain control and the several day stay in the pet hospital.

So, you have to make a decision based on how much money you are willing to spend.  You make the decision and you go with it, and you receive attentive and top notch service no matter what.

People sometimes say that they can’t afford their own health care, but they can afford a latte every morning, a plush manicure, a dinner out one or two times a week, or they own and maintain a loving rescue animal, and somehow it all works out.

What’s been defined here is health care for your pet at its best, and it’s affordable, full of options and competitive.  Indeed, your veterinarian is way more caring than your doctor is.  In other words, we treat our animals better than we treat ourselves and each other.

Why is that?

It’s because we don’t swipe our health care card when we go to the veterinarian.  We pay them money, and “money talks”.

Believe it or not, your doctors are as burned out as you are.  The proof?  Simply ask your doctor a bold question.  Ask if he/she would rather be paid by you with cash instead of “charging it” (having the middleman pay your bill).

Misconceptions

August 18th, 2016

Dr. Patrick Wagner

Doctors in it for the money

That’s right, In it for the money!

Everyone has a right to medical treatment!  That is a statement commonly heard, especially from the crowd that wants free medical treatment.   Let me pose a question.  Does everyone have a right to a plumber when they have plumbing problems?  Is there any such thing as a free plumber?  Does the statement “That’s right, in it for the money apply to plumbers as well?

Most of us agree that a plumber has a right to earn a decent living and in order to do that, the plumber must be paid a decent wage.  So why are we so concerned about how much a doctor makes.  Doctors like plumbers have a right to earn a decent living!

Is there a huge bureaucracy that determines when you get a plumber?  Do you or an insurance company determine when and how much a plumber gets paid?  Remember the plumber works in a free market.  Does the doctor?

Compare a surgeon to a plumber.  Now a plumber makes uninhabitable buildings inhabitable.  For example, the plumber’s hot and cold clean water supply lines are the surgeon’s circulatory system.  Sewer lines are intestines.

In exactly the same way, the plumber’s subject, the uninhabitable building which he makes inhabitable, is the same as the surgeon’s subject, the uninhabitable body which he makes inhabitable. Even in those unreasonable emergency hours of the day and night when plumbers and doctors should be at leisure.

We pay a plumber double or triple time when he comes out in the middle of the night or on weekends!  Yet we think the doctor should work for straight time or even better for free!

As a physician, I respect plumbers and they feel the same way I do.  Remember “Joe the plumber”?  It’s very important to recognize that job satisfaction depends heavily on how your boss treats you.

I recognize it when plumbers joke around.  Doctors do the same.  Have you heard this one yet?  “Payday is Friday, water runs downhill, and don’t bite your fingernails”.  Indeed, plumbers and doctors are basic creatures, just like you and I.

Life is about labor, isn’t it?  Life is a game of sorts.  The quality of the game depends on the quality of the players.  It’s easy to understand all of this by hanging out at the water cooler, talking about work while not working.

For many things in life, there is a cause and effect sequence.  Folks take things for granted.  For some time, I watched “Undercover Boss”.  Always a tear jerker.  It helped me recognize why rationalizing can be dangerous, and why humility can lead to the Truth, which is simple and great..

We all have to dig down deep inside and ask ourselves how we can help.  We have all of the evidence, and now it’s time to understand it, believe it and fix it.  We are the final decision.  We, the consumers are truly the boss, but we aren’t acting like it nowadays.

So keep asking yourself questions like these as you prepare to decide.

1     Do I really have skin in this game?

2     Am I going to outlive my money?

3     Is there going to be a good doctor to help me when I get sick?

4     What is going to happen when my sewer lines crap out?

5     What will be my value adjusted quality of life?

Let’s care about each other again and prove it by caring for each other again.

 

Is Everyone Treated Equal

August 18th, 2016

Dr. Patrick Wagner

HEALTH CARE DISCRIMINATION

Our federal and state government bureaucrats and our crony capitalist, crony socialist health care maintenance organizations are discriminating  against many Americans.

Plastic surgery, now defined as “aesthetic” surgery, is not recognized as a service which the aforementioned stingy managers of your insurance premiums will cover.

What I am saying here is that if you are an older person who wants to look younger by getting rid of wrinkles around your eyes, or getting rid of the self-perceived unsightly bags under your eyes, you are directed to the plastic surgeon to pay cash instead of relying on your health insurance provider.  If you are a young woman who wants to have a bigger bust, you are on your own!  I can even imagine what those who are transsexuals and want sex change surgery go through!  Unless you are in prison and the taxpayers pay for the operation and all the therapy that goes with it.

What is going on here?  I define it, being a licensed California physician, with the authorization to render a diagnosis and the power to render treatment, as discrimination.  Hasn’t the government promised us that health care in its present form designed to make medical procedures comfortably available and safe for all, at an affordable price?

My diagnosis is that our government, Obamacare, and managed healthcare organizations are practicing the epitome of discriminating against the American public.  What happened to “the patient comes first”.