Treatments

Doctors Appear Downbeat On Health Law

If you ask doctors what they think the new health law means for them, the responses aren't too cheery.

Doc, this health law might hurt just a bit.

hide captionDoc, this health law might hurt just a bit.

NPR/iStockphoto.com

An online community for docs called Sermo and Athenahealth, a company that helps doctors' offices electronically manage payments and records, ran a few questions by docs visiting Sermo's site starting Wednesday night.

While the survey isn't a scientific poll, the results are pretty clear. Docs aren't wild about overhaul. Here's a quick look at the responses so far, as of 4 p.m. EDT.

Question 1: "How does the passage of the health care reform affect your perception of medicine over the next few years?" (2658 respondents)
Less optimistic 79%
More optimistic 14%
Doesn't change 7%

Question 2: "For the state of your practice, do you believe the addition of 32 million more insured will be positive or negative?" (2620 respondents)
Negative 53%
Neutral 26%
Positive 22%

Question 3: "Will the changes to come from the reform bill move you to consider exiting all government reimbursed programs and deal only with private payers?" (2577 respondents)
Yes 66%
No 34%

Question 4. Will the changes to come from the reform bill move you to consider accepting no insurance at all? (2566 respondents)
Yes 53%
No 47%

For more on how doctors' feel about their practices and the future of medicine, see additional Athenahealth survey results here.

For its part, the American Medical Association has supported the legislation but is still eager to make sure that Congress fixes a formula Medicare uses to pay doctors.

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