Should health care be bailed out?

When is it medicine’s turn to take government money?

With the banking and auto industries bailed (or soon to be bailed) out, emergency physician Edwin Leap wonders when medicine gets its turn. After all, many hospitals are struggling under the unfunded mandate known as EMTALA, which will only worsen with rising unemployment leading to more people losing their health insurance.

Trouble is, taking government money cedes long-term control of the profession, which is what Dr. Leap truly fears:

We will all rue the day, when the US Government, arguably one of the most glorious experiments in freedom and most horrific examples of efficiency in history, decided to take over major industries in America. Especially banking.

So keep your bailout! I’d rather keep working under EMTALA as it is than have the federal government bail me out with any scheme whatsoever. In fact, I want the exact opposite. I want the government to’bail out,’ of medicine. To jump from the great airplane of health-care and pull the ripcord, floating away to distant locales so that we can do what we know how to do”¦which is take care of sick people.

He maintains that the best bailout that government can give is to leave doctors alone.

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