The Medical Society of New Jersey Responds to National Healthcare Reform
Statement of Dr. Joseph Reichman, 217th President of the Medical Society of New Jersey
“The 9,000 physician-members of the Medical Society of New Jersey all agree the United States healthcare system is in desperate need of reform.
Back home in New Jersey, a handful of big insurance companies control the healthcare market by raising premiums and reducing benefits to patients and payments to doctors. We hope the federal legislation will address these key issues as many provisions of the sweeping legislation are not clear at this time.
For physicians, the Medical Society of New Jersey believes the legislation falls short of real reform in some key areas. The legislation does not include any medical malpractice reforms that would lower physician costs and prevent defensive medicine practices.
We see no reduction in administrative burdens for physicians and no reform in the way healthcare services are paid under the Medicare Program.
Finally, the expansion of the Medicaid program, while laudable, is problematic here. The payments in New Jersey’s Medicaid program are among the lowest in the country, resulting in a majority of our physicians opting out of it altogether.
As physicians, we are pleased to see the bill provides access to coverage for millions of uninsured Americans and prohibits insurers from denying coverage for pre-existing medical conditions. However, the bill doesn’t go far enough to protect the healthcare providers who strive to preserve the physician-patient relationship.”