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Fascism! On! The! March! (At 10 Cents A Minute)

27 June 2011 @ 14:08

While possibly the main feature of a Fascist-minded government is the forced cooperation of big businessmen with the state, another feature, seen in every single such regime that has ever existed, is the use of agencies and departments of said state to intimidate small businessmen, entrepreneurs, licensed professionals, and employees.

So, with that in mind…we learn from The New York Times, Robert Pear reporting, that [tip of the fedora to The Lonely Conservative]:

Alarmed by a shortage of primary care doctors, Obama administration officials are recruiting a team of “mystery shoppers” to pose as patients, call doctors’ offices and request appointments to see how difficult it is for people to get care when they need it.

The administration says the survey will address a “critical public policy problem”: the increasing shortage of primary care doctors, including specialists in internal medicine and family practice. It will also try to discover whether doctors are accepting patients with private insurance while turning away those in government health programs that pay lower reimbursement rates.

Plans for the survey have riled many doctors because the secret shoppers will not identify themselves as working for the government.

Isn’t that just peachy.

What I have not seen commented on is the very real possibility, human nature being what it is in regards to the survival instinct, that many doctors will, for at least a time, refuse to take new patients. Ain’t that a wonderful thing, especially if you need to start seeing a specialist.

And what will happen to the data collected? As Doug Powers reports, quoting from The Times article…

In response to the drumbeat of criticism, a federal health official said doctors need not worry because the data would be kept confidential. “Reports will present aggregate data, and individuals will not be identified,” said the official, who requested anonymity to discuss the plan before its final approval by the White House.

…would you trust this government to abide by that promise?

Is it not a clear as a Montana sky that the whole purpose of this initiative is not to conduct a poll for the purposes of gathering useful data, but rather, by the nature of the way the poll itself is being conducted [by stealth, by deception], to intimidate those doctors who are refusing to take on certain patients? Anyone, who does not, at the very least, suspect, this is suffering from lack of oxygen due to having his head stuck-up his own arse.

As The Lonely Conservative comments:

…As is the norm with this administration, what they’re doing isn’t so much surprising as it is appalling.

This Administration has appalled me so many times I’ve developed a pallor.

The Memeorandum thread is here.

  1. Otis P. Driftwood permalink
    27 June 2011 @ 14:40 14:40

    You gotta love it. The government is using a government entity to investigate a government program. The results can then be skewed to reflect whatever it is you wanted reflected.

  2. Adobe Walls permalink
    27 June 2011 @ 17:33 17:33

    If one is recommended to a specialist by another doc I suspect you’ll get in. People making cold call appointments are already screwed.

    Shockingly, no I don’t trust anything this regime tells me or tells you for that matter.

    Make mud bricks.

  3. cathy permalink
    27 June 2011 @ 20:41 20:41

    The results can then be skewed to reflect whatever it is you wanted reflected.

    I think that’s a safe bet.

    And I would be interested in knowing how they will select the physicians/practices to call. If the big talking point to come out of this is that “Americans can’t get access to medical care when they need it,” they would be foolish to call urgent care clinics or new practices. If it’s just to “prove” that Medicaid patients can’t get care, they can just skip the physicians that are registered as accepting Medicaid. It’s often much easier to skew the sample — or the questions, for that matter — than to tinker with the results.

    After “Gunwalker,” I’m afraid I wouldn’t put anything past ’em.

  4. 27 June 2011 @ 21:31 21:31

    Well, they won’t have far to search. I think I read somewhere plus some anecdotal stories of doctors already turning away new medicaid and medicare patients.

    Mike G.


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