Arkansas Doctor on Obamacare Burdens Healthcare Providers

Jun 26, 2014 by AFP

Neurologist Kathryn Chenault of Little Rock, Arkansas writes in USA Today about how the Affordable Healthcare Act has made her professional life much more difficult.

Not only has the ACA led to between six and nine million Americans losing their insurance. It has driven up premiums by double-digit percentages and threatens to swamp doctors in paperwork. Chenault writes:
“[…]Obamacare worsened the bureaucratic burden like nothing I’ve ever seen. By October, the law had already created11,000 pages of regulation. It has added thousands more since.
Doctors, hospitals and insurers must hire armies of lawyers and administrators to make sense of this system. This leads to mountains of paperwork. I’ve had to hire extra staff to fill out forms, file them and fax them. Even for a private practice doctor like me, this dramatically increases costs while worsening the patient’s experience. This also explains why doctors rarely spend enough time with patients. We’re forced to do paperwork, too.”
Federal regulations of the medical profession certainly didn’t begin with the ACA. But the ACA represents an increased regulatory burden on a completely unprecedented scale. And as the regulations keep piling up, the system will work progressively worse. Which, as we know, has a tendency to warrant more regulations.
Chenault says it best: “No doctor wants less time with her patients. We value the doctor-patient relationship above all else. But now our hands are tied by Washington’s never-ending need to regulate our every move.”