I am a physician in Georgia. My practise is very diverse but my obstetrical arm serves mostly disadvantages and underinsured patients. My state has not increased the amount it pays for Global Obstetrical care ($1305 in 2001 when I went into private practise and $1305 today) in at least 14 years. I have an EOB (estimate of benefits) statement from the older physician who sold me his practise in 2001/2002 dating back to 1994 and it shows that the Georgia Medicaid department paid $1296 for global obstetrical care in that year (1994). That means that Medicaid has increased pay to physicians delivering babies in Georgia by just nine dollars ($9) over the last 20 years while state workers, contracters, subcontractors, legislators, etc. have had many pay increases over that same period. Many small practises like mine have become insolvent and many of the providers have died or suffered life-altering medical conditions due to the lack of fair pay by the state medicaid board using federal dollars that are awarded to the state to care for indigent patients. My three questions are: 1. What recourse is there for physicians that essential work for medicaid to force them to pay a fair and equitable fee for services rendered ( note that Medicare or the Federal Gov. indigent care program pays $2200 for global obstetrical care now...$900 more per delivered patient)? 2. Given that football players and basketball players play for different teams but are covered by the same labor union, why can't physicians unionize to have a more concerted voice in issues related to them like fair compensation? 3. The Federal government requires equal treatment under the law, especially when federal dollars are used. Can physicians legally be singled out and paid less for the sole purpose of balancing state budgets when other state employees and citizens in general are allowed to work, live , and thrive in our free market system? Thanks in advance for your insight!
Last comment. I am a solo practice OB/GYN in Georgia. There are thousands of others like me who are dying and are distraught but unsure how to try to fight the gigantic machine of our state government. The two older physicians that I purchased their practices to start my own small group practise both died 14-15 years less than their average life expectancy. 13 years later and one heart attack later, I am seeking help to learn how to do my part to save the lives of health care providers who are dying while serving the disadvantaged of our country. Please, please point me in the right direction. By the way, I contacted the civil liberties department five or so times without a single reply.
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