Tuesday, March 29, 2005

New Jersey -- doing its best to make doctors leave the state

Un-fucking believable. In addition to the Medicare regulations, HIPAA paperwork, CME requirements, and malpractice CYA that they have to go through, now New Jersey physicians will have to go through mandated education about the unique needs of their patients from different cultural backgrounds. Where do you draw the line? How many different cultures will one be required to be proficient in? Will surgeons need to learn about the intricate medical beliefs of Australian Aboriginals? Or perhaps worry that they are not keeping up with the latest cultural shifts in Santeria?

In my community, there are a few Korean physicians. Guess what? Many Korean patients prefer to seen them. Great! That is how things are supposed to work. If I (can't help it, I'm one of those satanic white males) come off as "culturally insensitive," I won't get to see certain patients, for the same reason that I wouldn't see many women if I am overtly sexist. That is what is known as the FREE MARKET. It is MY JOB to make sure that I care for my patients in the best manner that I can, regardless of their ethnicity, religion, background, etc. This type of feel-good mumbo jumbo has the stamp of the AMA all over it, and it is truly ridiculous. Those that promote these laws make a fatuous argument about "diversity," without understanding the important issues of free choice and personal responsibility.