Posted in: Opinion

Doctor Stops Insurance Coverage, Obamacare May Force More To Follow

Doctor Stops Insurance Coverage, Obamacare May Force More To Follow

As a doctor stops insurance coverage, Obamacare might be making many medical offices pondering whether they should consider a similar move.

As previously reported by The Inquisitr, Dr. Michael Ciampi is the doctor who stopped insurance coverage and then went on to tell the world why he did it.

Ciampi is now charging $50 for a doctor’s visit and $150 for a full physical. Ciampi explains that doctors stopping insurance coverage allows them to eliminate the insurance paperwork and improve both patient care and the bottom line:

“I’m freed up to do what I think is right for the patients. If I’m providing them a service that they value, they can pay me, and we cut the insurance out as the middleman and cut out a lot of the expense. I’ve been able to cut my prices in half because my overhead will be so much less … If more doctors were able to do this, that would be real health care reform. That’s when we’d see the cost of medicine truly go down.”

As this doctor stops insurance coverage, insurers all over the country are forecasting huge premium increases due to Obamacare when the full law goes into effect in 2014 and all of America’s workers are forced to purchase private health insurance coverage. Doctors are not liking this medical forecast because insurance companies do not negotiate with physicians. It’s all take-it-or-leave-it contracts.

A doctor’s income is what the office takes in payments minus expenses or overhead. Physician overhead cover many things but the most expensive cost is the staff necessary to handle insurance coverage. About 20 to 30 years ago this cost used to be around 15 to 30 percent of revenue. Now for many doctors this insurance overhead has grown to an outstanding 60 percent or more, with more staff being hired to handle the quickly enlarging piles of paperwork required by Obamacare.

To top it off, Medicare is beginning to cap payments while the overhead costs remain the same, or worsen. So doctors may stop insurance coverage from Medicare just because they’d see a huge drop in their annual income.

As a personal example, I’ll tell you a tale of two doctors who I know personally. One chiropractor takes insurance, charges around $60 per visit with a $10 co-pay, and has four staff members. The other chiropractor stopped insurance coverage, charges $49 a month for four visits, and only has one staff member.

As a doctor stops insurance coverage, do you think changes need to be done to Obamacare and America’s medical system?

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Comments

6 Responses to “Doctor Stops Insurance Coverage, Obamacare May Force More To Follow”

  1. Laura Hague Mock

    One flaw in your article is that the expectation of higher insurance rates due to Obamacare is proving to be untrue. Both California and Oregon have had their rates drop 30-40%.