Friday, December 19, 2008

Threat of government regulation prevents doctors from providing good medical care

Another sad day for freedom in our so-called "free country". The threat of harassment from state regulators has caused Charter Internal Medicine to delay its switch to concierge medicine. It appears that the imbeciles at the Maryland Insurance Administration are concerned that boutique medicine may cross the line and be considered insurance. I have to wonder if the insurance administration even knows what insurance is. The underlying concept of insurance is risk pooling. How are risks being pooled with retainer fees?

“The central issue is whether any of these arrangements cross the line to trigger obligations as an authorized insurer,” state Insurance Commissioner Ralph Tyler said in the release. The agency “wants to be sure it understands these arrangements and will review the need for additional oversight or regulation.”

Dr. Peter Beilenson, county health officer, said he does not think boutique medicine amounts to insurance, but said it is likely the state review process will not be over quickly.

Hopefully, other doctors will continue to move forward with the boutique model, and give the insurance commission the legal ass kicking that it desperately needs.