Thursday, Nov. 12, 2009 | 2:02 a.m.
Regarding Dr. Gary L. Kantor’s letter to the editor in Monday’s Las Vegas Sun, headlined “Not all doctors agree with AMA support of bill”:
He is correct that only a small minority of doctors belong to the AMA; however, his comments on how Medicare recipients might be affected by health care reform legislation differ from what others say.
He is correct that seniors will be affected, but not regular Medicare patients (the vast majority) but rather those who also use the private, insurer-run Medicare Advantage Program. Remember, this Republican-created program benefits the pharmaceutical companies. So, yes, those companies will not be as profitable under proposed legislation. The House bill affects only those who, at taxpayers’ expense, use the Advantage Program, not most regular Medicare patients.
Second, the new, young, up-and-coming doctors support an even stronger, more effective system than the one proposed by the House. The American Medical Student Association endorses a much-needed single-payer system, or, at the very least, a strong public option. Its Web site clearly focuses on the need for this benefit. So, the days of resistance to reform are likely numbered as newer, more progressive doctors serve the nation.
About the AMA, I would add that perhaps it is becoming less and less relevant as fewer doctors identify with it. That organization will definitely have to change when these newer, younger, more progressive doctors start their service to America.