Propaganda in the pages: The bizarro world of JLF

Logic so twisted not even they can unravel it:

he fatal flaw in this methodology, however, is that in order to “draw down” federal Medicaid dollars, actual medical services need to be provided to Medicaid patients. It is only when doctors actually treat Medicaid patients that the federal government pays those providers for the services.

As reported recently by WRAL, “A survey this year by The Physicians Foundation found that 81 percent of doctors describe themselves as either over-extended or at full capacity, and 44 percent said they planned to cut back on the number of patients they see, retire, work part-time or close their practice to new patients.” Such extreme supply constraints tells us that if North Carolina were to expand Medicaid, the newly enrolled would have great difficulty actually seeing a doctor. Coverage will not equal access.

News flash, Einstein: A large percentage of those yet-to-be-enrolled are already seeking care, but only after their condition has become life-threatening. And while a physician might be required to trigger a Medicaid payment, the vast majority of the care rendered is done so by physicians assistants and nurses. Also, a big reason for the shortage in primary care physicians in rural/urban areas is because patients don't have insurance and cannot pay the bills. Expanding Medicaid coverage would make those areas if not profitable, at least not as unprofitable as they have been.



Where does that Invisible Hand come in?

When the market determines there is a demand for services, the market fills that need. Isn't that what is referred to as the 'invisible hand of the market?' And it could be that many of those unable to see a doctor in their own county do what everyone else does, and travels to the nearest source of doctors. Way back in the 1950s, people in Wilmington always talked about going to Duke when they needed specialized treatment. Now, people who live in rural areas are probably doing the same thing for regular medical care.

The expansion of Medicaid as established by the Affordable Care Act will allow those who cannot currently afford medical care to seek out and get the care they need. If you build it, they will come. 'They' being the doctors. That is how the free market works.