My take: Mandate wars, reimbursement, ignoring physicians

1) My take on the individual mandate wars between Hillary and Obama: it’s comical. The level of nuance they are arguing about may satisfy the wonks, but it’s over the head of the average voter. In any case, Hillary’s arguments for mandates is leaving her open to attack. Obama’s Harry and Louise ads and Hillary’s “garnishing wages” comment will resonate more with the voters than the importance of an individual mandate.

2) My take on Massachusetts’ Commonwealth Care considering cutting physician reimbursements: it demonstrates a profound of lack of insight by the politicians trying to fix health care. Unbelievably, this plan proposes year-to-year reimbursement increases that lag even Medicaid. Good luck finding any doctor accepting Commonwealth Care, once again making universal coverage useless without physician access.

3) My take on the Presidential candidates ignoring physicians is that they do so at their own peril. Dr. Wes observed that the word “physician” was used only sparingly during the most recent Democratic debate. That’s a shame, since the providers – primary care especially – will be the backbone of any universal coverage plan. Addressing the primary care shortage in any way will go a long way to swaying my vote. But like Massachusetts, it seems that they are willing to learn the hard way. So be it.

4) My take on the Super Bowl is that the Giants were the better team last night. Despite getting outplayed, the Patriots were in good position leading 14-10 with about 3 minutes left. In fact, if they played that exact endgame scenario 10 times, the Patriots would probably win the game in 8 of them. Eli Manning was forced to drive for a touchdown, and he did. There were a few near-interceptions and near-sacks, but I give him credit for pulling it off. Congratulations to New York.

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