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Martin Odber

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Can the shortage of doctors be solved using an adaptation of the third law of supply and demand?

The third law of supply and demand states "If demand remains unchanged and supply increases, a surplus occurs, leading to a lower equilibrium price."
( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supply_and_demand )

If we increased the rate of new doctors entering medicine (using mechanisms such as but not limited to; subsidizing doctors education, further compartmentalizing aspects of health care etc ) until we reached a surplus state then would waiting times and the cost of healthcare go down accordingly?

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    Sep 6 2013: Martin, Sounds like Socialist Central Planning. We need less government NOT more. I took my son who just got out of the military to the doctor ... he did not have a job or insurance at the time. His appointment cost was $25. I went home and looked at my medical billing statement and my appointment cost was $150 with insurance. I went through all of the items on the bill and found out if I saved XX amount a week for medical and went uninsured I would be way ahead .... the reason I keep insurance is for catastrophic events. Insurance for him to practice drives costs up ... insurance on my part drives his profits down. Equipment costs are extravagant ... Doctors are in debit for a long time due to operating expenses. Look at your billing statement at what was charged and what the insurance actually paid. It is a big middleman game.

    The Canadian 13 hour wait is based on triage assignments. Since the law was passed that no one can be turned away in the US at the emergency room .. we have the same problem. All of the illegals that desire free care go to the emergency room for a cold or less even. They completely tie up staff ... cause long waits ... do not pay .... etc .. That is the type of government interference that has caused the problem you mention.

    Obamacare is based on wellness ... numbers support fewer doctors and more clinics staffed by technicians and maybe a nurse.

    The waiting time for surgery in Canada is off the chart and lucky if you get the operation you need .... for those of us in the US that have read the new medical plan (Obamacare) see this in our future as well. It has little to do with the amount of doctors and a lot to do with government interference, red tape requirements, and seeking permission from a bureaucrat on a medical issue. Many Canadians come to the US for procedures they would wait a long time for or have been refused. However, you do have a better program for prescription drugs.

    Bob.
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      Sep 6 2013: Bob,

      I think at the end of the day I am very PRO as to subsidizing doctors education utilizing government funds.

      Frankly, so far in my entire life it hasn't mattered ONE BIT what approach was taken to governing, taxes go up, prices go up, wages go down. Subsidize or dont subsidize doctors makes little difference on that front and I think we both know it.

      However, I read about the vets that were being sent to that hospital where the mold was growing on the walls, and I was appalled.
      The men and women of the armed forces gave all they had protect their country, came back in parts, and were dropped off in conditions I'd not leave my dog in.
      I realize those persons were not rich with great insurance, ok fair enough. But they were and are people who put it all on the line for people who are, along with everyone else.

      Those men, women and children out there on the streets, are our countrymen. Our nations family.

      I think all people in our country deserve the basics that it takes to "pursue happiness" and in my book good health is right there top of the list.

      To think my taxes were ensuring myself my family my community my country had great healthcare? Thats worth something. Its worth alot actually.

      So yes, if getting great healthcare means subsidizing doctors educations so we can make sure we're well looked after is what it takes? DO IT.
      If establishing great healthcare using advanced technology is the answer as it cuts out labor costs? DO IT

      Whatever it takes lets do it, and not sit on our hands and say .. well thats the way its always been, we should just accept it.

      Our nations are first world nations. Top of the line, and our people are not worthy of decent affordable healthcare? Our genius's cannot figure out how to achieve this for us?

      ..a last comment Bob, "Martin, Sounds like Socialist Central Planning" Bob, .. whatever label people come up with that means "working so the the team wins" should never be a bad word. Together we stand, divided we fall.. "
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        Sep 6 2013: Martin, We both want good and affordable health care. This discussion is really about two things: 1) how we arrived at this mess and 2) what methods should we employ to resolve the issues.

        "Most" doctors are good people who want to help ... yeah, there is also some greed mixed in there ... So if we start there what are the problems that got us to where we are. I see a few that could be major players ... lawyers, unions, big government, and social programs that are unfunded and become a millstone around the economy.

        My doctor is also a close friend. He spend much of his time on welfare and pro bono cases just as emergency room do ... the working society pays for those cases. He see many who never take his advice and are their own worst enemy ... they smoke, are "fat", never exercise, eat wrong, and so forth ... unfortunately these are the very people who are looking to make a quick buck and there is always a lawyer lurking in the shadows for a lawsuit. He pays high insurance on his practice, staff, facilities, equipment, and personal policies. He must hire more people to keep up with bureaucrats who tell him how and when to practice medicine.

        So here is my idea to solve the problem: 1) Return to a Constitutional government thus reducing size and cost. 2) Eliminate frivolous lawsuits 3) Eliminate mass social programs that kill the work incentive and inspire generation welfare 4) term limits for "career politicians" thus stopping the elite mentality of congress and 5) insurance is necessary but is out of control ... like unions we need to evaluate and regulate the industry.

        This issue about money and power .... not really medicine or the public. Much like illegals ... it can be stopped but they represent a voting block so ignore the Constitution ... power and money.

        Once again the middle class suffers and foots the bills ... More government is never the answer.

        Lets solve the problem not add to it.

        Regards .. Bob
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          Sep 6 2013: 1 Constitutional government, so pretty much wipe out all government services except by those specifically defined by the constitution. This may not necessarily mean any reduction in cost or taxes, it could for example simply have the remaining government figures having very high salaries.

          2. Eliminate frivolous lawsuits. We may agree here Bob. I think justice would be a lot better served if we removed lawyers from the equation altogether and had individuals present their cases directly to a judge and jury. All to often we see justice degraded to "may the best lawyer win."

          3. Eliminate mass social programs. Very uncool I think. Unemployment is already rampant and as jobs get shipped out globally that number will grow. In the US there is a right to bear arms, and when people get hungry they are going to turn mean and use those guns to survive. Once a person with their bag of money starts spending 24 hours a day hiding from those armed starving people willing to kill or be killed just for something to eat.. you may have some refreshing thoughts about the values of social programs. I can assure you that living on food-stamps as it is is no picnic for anyone there and I'm pretty sure they''d all like to have great high paying jobs. You really sure about this one Bob because people may not return to slavery as quietly as you might hope?

          4. Term limits for career politicians. Last time I checked we're already playing the "the name changes but the game remains the same." Provided the political parties and system remains the same, how does changing the faces any faster actually help the country? I feel unsure how this would benefit.

          5. Insurance is necessary but out of control. like unions we need to regulate .. this statement is contrary to the "constitutional government" yes? As well.. I think the real issue there isn't that insurance is too high, but that people need to earn more money so paying it becomes a non issue. To that end I actually fully support unions.
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        Sep 6 2013: 1. By simple accounting ... less people, facilities, etc would mean less taxes and expenditures. It would also mean that representatives would meet for less time and salary would match work. The original intent (IMO) was for Congress to perform civic duty ... not to become a millionaires club.

        3. This is a difference between you and I as Liberal and Conservative ... I think that we should determine needs on a per issue basis. Mass programs create entitlements ... since these are unearned it develops generational welfare of you owe me. I owe you nothing. I will provide a hand up but not mass social programs of a hand out.

        4. Have to agree with you. This must be done with the return to a Constitutional government and the return of the representatives being civil servants meeting once a year for two month or so. It could be compared to school boards who are unpaid. We need fresh ideas and new views by people who will not be there long enough to manipulate the system or become rich.

        5. Unions are a Marxist invention where the the ideas was that the value of the product lies the the craftsmen and therefore owners and managers were unnecessary. Lately people have come to realize that unions have lost sight of their original purpose and have voted them out. As for your statement of insurance isn't to high but people need to make more to afford it .... when wages go up costs go up .... I have yet to understand the mentality of .... if you don't give me more money we will shut you down and not have any money. Who sold workers that idea .... Hi honey we didn't get a raise so we are going to shut the whole company down. We will lose the house, the car and go hungry. Boy did we show them.

        Thanks for the reply ..... Bob.
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          Sep 7 2013: 1. Politicians decisions and math are not interchangeable. There is absolutely no guarantee that less government equals less cost, only in our dreams.

          3. Want to stand alone? I'm sure there are islands in international waters where a person can set up camp and owe no one anything. As for being a part of a society protected by an army, transportation and goods provided at reasonable rates due to mass production/consumption, jobs available because there is a society to purchase them, medical aid available because the masses require it.. to stand there and say I owe society nothing.. yes you can say it.. but don't you ever expect any reasonable person to believe it. Without society backing you, chances are good we'd have nothing backing us but trouble.

          5. When the average person becomes rich, a good deal of their money is saved, or spent offshore. Most people who are not rich, spend most of their money locally to themselves to improve their condition. That means the money goes back into their communities and nation. That means that unions, getting good wages for their people, are actually STIMULATING the local economy, not some nations economy abroad. Did you consider this before downing unions? With more and more jobs going to "minimum wage" faster and faster.. that downs the local economy and weakens our nation. Myself, I'd like our nation to be strong and prosperous from the ground up.
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        Sep 7 2013: 1) I never discussed politicians decisions ... I am against big government. If I reduce it then taxes must come down or someone needs to go to jail.

        3) No man is a island. I do not advocate total abandonment of government. I suggest a return to a Constitutional government. The federal has specif responsibilities and the power in invested in the states. You may have misunderstood what a return to a Constitutional government implies.

        5) My argument against unions stands .. on this we disagree and will not likely change views. On money going offshore etc ... many US citizens are giving up their citizenship because the IRS wants a share of all money sent / earned / deposited / invested / ect ... overseas. Jobs are going to minimum wage because Obamacare has determined the work week to be 30 hours. Because employers would be forced to spend millions to maintain the current level of employees they have reduced the work week to 25 hours to keep the business operating. The socialist hate for the wealthy is nothing new ... however, a look into the amount of taxes the rich contribute would defeat most arguments ... don't believe all the propaganda.
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          Sep 7 2013: I've erased my comment. We are moving away from the subject of how to improve our nations healthcare and digressing into a place that can bring us no good.

          Bob, if you really feel the rich have no obligation to their country or fellow man only to themselves, so be it. That will have to be between you and God, within the context of this debate that is not an issue for me to undertake.

          I will thank you however for your input, you have provided some interesting thoughts.
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        Sep 7 2013: The "rich" (1%) paid 39% of all taxes last year .... the top 20% paid 94.1% of all taxes. The charts show that all of taxes are paid by 25% of the people.

        As you say it is off topic. Perhaps we should cover that in a separate conversation.

        Thanks for a respectful conversation. I wish you well. Bob.
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          Sep 8 2013: Bob, I will always enjoy our debates as I keep in mind the person is separate from the action.

          Perhaps the day will come you will change my mind, or perhaps the day will come that I change yours, or some combination thereof.

          I feel it is more important to focus on what is right or wrong, than who.

          Cheers Bob!

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