EDITOR’S NOTE: The opinions below are those of the author and not, necessarily, Healthcare Michigan, it’s advertisers or staff.
By ALLAN DOBZYNIAK, MD
Has our profession of medicine passed the point of no return? Are we simply a round cog forced into a square hole by those who would or must control us? Are physicians employees, commodities or simply subservient to the insurance companies, corporatists and politicians?
Surrendering the profession to what physicians are told to perceive as the populist mandate is not the cure; it is part of the disease.
Equating professionalism to progressive groupthink and equating this then to taking the “high road” has given physicians a great view of their defeat as a profession of independent thinkers focused laser-like on the professional mission handed down for the last 1,500 years.
Cries of “physicians must get with the program,” and not dwell nostalgically on the past is the excuse to condone, actually encourage, deference to the technocrats, bureaucrats and others who consider themselves the bosses. If physicians are serious about not surrendering to those who have taken what should be the most rewarding of all professions and who have created grief, abysmal morale and even depression, this is the time to acknowledge what has taken place and is destroying the profession of medicine.
There cannot be a continued cry of let’s just go along to get along. Then again, if surrender is the conclusion, then all that is needed is more of what physicians and their organizations have been doing.
Then there is the reality of destroying the profession from within. C.S. Lewis described how the principles of democracy have the seeds of its destruction. Forcing human beings into equity mandates the sameness of collectivism. Add to this the deceptive term “social justice,” which creates “social injustice” for the non-favored. Yes, there is a great leveling, but it is downward.
Stealing potential upward mobility from those motivated, those gifted, those full of dreams is immoral, unethical—even sinful.
No, this is not “social justice” and certainly undermines the true concepts of actual justice. The declaration by the American Medical Association of its commitment to “diversity” even to the exclusion of merit can be no clearer example of such destructive ideology.
Precise terminology is one of the most powerful tools for reasoning and communicating clearly, to inform, while imprecise terminology is just as powerful for those seeking to persuade.
We hear about revolution in healthcare all the time. But do those behind the voices only do it in the context of their ultimate goal being to impose their will on us. If diversity and conformity are to be valued so highly, rather than accomplishment or merit, does this cast a shadow over the profession, freedom and creativity? Shouldn’t accomplishment be something to be celebrated? Maybe accomplishment has been redefined to fit this term into the new narrative; it now needs politically correct modifiers. Maybe this cheapens it. Is this good? How is this the solution to disparities in healthcare?
Will “secular humanism” with its “social justice,” zealous commitments to preventing “climate change” Armageddon, and global inclusion of anti-racism in every single issue replace religion, family and love of country as bases for healthcare’s positive evolution?
What I do know is that if physicians do not broaden the discussion to include views beyond the zealots demanding perceived conformity of thought and demonstrate this broad commitment to insightful deliberative discussion, the profession will degrade to that commodity which will have destroyed it. What is the rationale for perpetual modifications to a system that cannot ever work for patients or providers?
The focus on modification of unworkable payment schemes does not make them workable There are $4 trillion dollars spent annually on healthcare. If the vast bulk of money consumed by healthcare was spent on patient care, this number would decrease.
Until the multitude of middlemen, management, technology frauds, bureaucrats, insurance companies, politicians and lobbyists stop vacuuming up healthcare dollars, no tweaking of the present system will provide value. Doctors want to take care of patients; patients want care from their doctors. Returning focus on this simple equation seems more than obvious.