Doctors in Congress: Obamacare worse than you think

By WND Staff

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At least 12 doctors in Congress have expressed serious concerns about Obamacare, and now President Obama admitted the recently unveiled online health insurance exchanges have been a technological headache and that he’s “frustrated” by them.

Obama also insists once those problems are fixed people will discover that the exchanges offer wonderful health plans at affordable prices, but a prominent congressman says the facts are not on the president’s side.

“They’re still trying to sell a program that the American people know won’t work,” said Rep. Tom Price, R-Ga., a former physician who authored a free-market version of health-care reform that is still awaiting House consideration. “And it won’t work because the same things that are wrong with the website, that is the challenge of getting into it and having it work are the same things that are going to be wrong throughout the entire health-care system when Washington is running it.”

The exchange woes are very real in Price’s district as well. At a town hall on Monday, many constituents had tried to navigate the website with no success. Price stresses that whenever the online problems are fixed, the biggest problems will just be starting.

“The real problem is not that the website won’t work,” Price said. “It’s that the program won’t work because it puts Washington in charge and that’s not what people want.”

In “Doctor in the House,” Rep. Michael Burgess applies his three decades of experience working inside our nation’s health-care system and brings clarity and common sense to the perplexing national debate over Obamacare.

On Monday, Obama vowed swift attention to the exchange problems but spent most of his address touting 20 million hits on the site and almost half-a-million Americans’ accounts created on the exchange. But Price said the lack of any actual enrollment numbers is a major red flag.

“It’s a complete lack of transparency by this administration that touted itself as the most transparent ever,” he said. “I’m not certain if they won’t tell us how many have signed up because it’s such a paltry number or whether they don’t know. Both of them are awful problems to have by an administration that is trying to run one-sixth of our economy and all of our health care.”

Stopping Obamacare through defunding or delay was the goal of congressional conservatives during the recent standoff over government funding and the debt ceiling. And while Price supported those efforts, he said the wall-to-wall coverage of the shutdown obscured just how terrible the Obamacare exchange roll-out really was.

“That’s because the mainstream media tend to focus on one big story at a time, and they can’t handle more than that’s because the American people’s attention is difficult to have focused on more than one thing,” Price said.

Despite the failure of the GOP to slow down or derail Obamacare in recent weeks, Price believes its fate is sealed by its own massive flaws.

“This system won’t work because it can’t work,” he said. “It doesn’t work for patients. It doesn’t work for families, doesn’t work for doctors and certainly doesn’t work for employers or employees. At this point, we’re seeing how it doesn’t work for states from an exchange standpoint or the federal government from a financing standpoint. I think the whole thing will implode. The sad thing about all this is there will be real people who will be harmed from a quality health care or accessibility aspect that wouldn’t have otherwise.”

Price is not alone in his assessment of Obamacare. Many other doctors currently serving in Congress have expressed serious concerns about the federal health-care law:

As WND reported, Rep. Dan Benishek, R-Mich., a longtime physician and surgeon, warned that Obamacare will destroy the American health-care system through the gutting of Medicare and government intervention in personal decisions through the Independent Payment Advisory Board. He said, “Mr. Obama’s plan is really bad for America.”
WND also interviewed Rep. Charles Boustany, R-La., a cardiothoracic surgeon, who called Obamacare a “fatally flawed program” and warned it would leave the nation much deeper in debt.

Rep. Michael Burgess, R-Texas, is uniquely qualified to assess Obamacare after spending nearly three decades practicing medicine in North Texas, serving as co-chair of the Congressional Health Caucus and authoring the WND book “Doctor in the House” with its prescriptions for more efficient and less expensive health care. During the government shutdown, Burgess told WND, “I think we have to be prepared to say to the American people, ‘Look, we’ve had three-and-a-half years, billions and billions of dollars, it’s not working. For heaven’s sakes, don’t spend another dime on this disaster!”

Rep. Paul Broun, R-Ga., whose specialty is family medicine, said the biggest threat to the economy is “Obamacare. It’s already destroyed jobs, it’s already destroyed our economy, and if it stays in place as it is now, it’s going to destroy America.”

Rep. Bill Cassidy, R-La., a longtime physician known for teaching medical students at Louisiana State University and establishing public-private partnerships to inoculate tens of thousands of poor children, told WND, “Right now the voter in Louisiana is concerned about the economy, as are voters across the nation. They recognize that small businesswoman may make a decision not to hire that 50th employee because once she does, she has to pay a penalty of $40,000 to comply with Obamacare. Or the voter may realize that because of Obamacare, they’re losing their full-time job and they’re being moved to a part-time job. All those are issues that are keeping folks from economic advancement, from having a better future for their family.”

Rep. Larry Bucshon, R-Ind., a former cardiothoracic surgeon, warned, “Despite the president’s promises, premiums are on the rise and nearly 7 million Americans will lose their job-based health insurance plans.” He wrote, “Common-sense, private-sector reforms are the answer, not a near government takeover of our nation’s health-care system.”
Rep. Scott DesJarlais, R-Tenn., a family medicine practitioner, openly questioned whether the IRS is capable of being a neutral, nonpartisan player in enforcing the program. He asked, “Are they competent to do it? Are they trustworthy enough?”
Rep. Phil Gingrey, R-Ga., an obstetrician, told WND Obamacare is “darn sure un-American” and the Republican Party has “an obligation to the American people” to fight against it at every opportunity.
Rep. John Fleming, R-La., also a family medicine practitioner, expressed frustration with what he called the “eroding right of conscience” resulting from Obamacare, adding that doctors, nurses and other health-care providers should have the right to refuse to perform abortions and other procedures that violate their religious beliefs. He said, “The government should not have the right to force you to participate in some type of behavior that is going to conflict with your conscience rights, and if it does or potentially does, you should have the ability to have access to courts, and currently that’s not necessarily the case. Under Obamacare, you have reach out to the secretary of HHS. That is Secretary (Kathleen) Sebelius, who is very, very pro-abortion. So what’s the chance that she’s going to cede to you or in some way protect you when she’s part of this whole development when those rights are taken away from health-care providers?”
Even Rep. Raul Ruiz, D-Calif., a doctor who specializes in emergency medicine, caught flak from fellow Democrats when he voted to delay Obamacare’s individual mandate in July this year.
Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., an orthopedic surgeon, said the Obamacare exchanges “are being held together right now with duct tape and chicken wire.” He told CNN that Americans are in for sticker shock: “The president made a couple of promises. One with the exchanges, and he said it would be cheaper than a cellphone bill. And I don’t expect a lot of people to be able to find something less than $71 a month on the exchanges. People are going to be paying more. And he said … if you have your doctor, and you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor. We’re seeing all across the country exchanges that trying to get the price down have had to exclude many doctors.”
And just last month, Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., an ophthalmologist, declared he doesn’t believe taxpayers should subsidize health care for any federal employees because they should be forced to buy into Obamacare.

“My amendment says basically that everybody including Justice Roberts – who seems to be such a fan of Obamacare – gets it too,” Paul told The Daily Caller. “See, right now, Justice Roberts is still continuing to have federal employee health insurance subsidized by the taxpayer. And if he likes Obamacare so much, I’m going to give him an amendment that gives Obamacare to Justice Roberts.”

According to a 2012 survey released by the Doctor Patient Medical Association, 83 percent of American physicians have considered leaving their practices over Obamacare.

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