Today Drudge reports that Walgreens drugstores in Washington State will no longer accept new patients under Medicaid. Walgreens explains that reimbursement rates under Medicaid are simply too low: the stores are losing money by serving this population.
Welcome to the brave new world of government-run medicine.
As governments try to squeeze savings, providers will exit this system. This won’t just happen with pharmacists. An Investor’s Business Daily survey which was conducted last fall found that 45 percent of doctors say they will consider leaving medicine if this health care legislation passes. Another survey conducted in December had similar findings. Undoubtedly many of these doctors, already sick of spending so much of their time complying with the existing bureaucracy and paperwork, worry that increased government involvement will mean even more red tape. Too low government reimbursement rates are surely also part of the problem.
An exodus of medical professionals will lead to longer wait times; those wait times will be even worse since more widely available health insurance will mean a greater consumption of medical care. So we will have more patients and fewer doctors. It’s no wonder that our recent poll found that a majority of voters from swing states believe that the health care system will be made worse by this legislation.
Members, are you listening?