Tuesday, March 01, 2005

The Horrible, Horrible System is Mean!

From Grand Rounds, (this week at http://www.intueri.org/index.php?p=1302) I came across this post at "Totheteeth." It is nice that people want to provide health care as charity, but I have to agree that the bashing of the free market system is really unwarranted. (my comments below the link)


"In a lot of ways our system of medicine is so corrupt in its values around money instead of taking care of patients." said Ziwasimon.
...um...I'm not sure what Ziwasimon means by the "system" being corrupt, since the "system" isn't really taking care of patients and I am. And I do it in exchange for money. If I didn't get money in exchange for taking care of patients, I couldn't really continue to do it. Certainly "the system" cares a lot about money - for example, I paid in the neighborhood of $120,000 out of pocket and with loans (not donations, I had to pay them back with interest) just to become educated enough to take care of sick people. (I'm going to leave aside the economic analysis of my postgraduate training years where I earned $7.85/hr while trying to pay back those loans).
To echo Pogo, bravo if you want to do charity. We live in a country that gives us the freedom to make those choices. But asserting that I have less of a right to profit from my expertise than any other person leads down a road where we don't have an American health care system, and instead of merely a problem with health care for the indigent, you end up with problematic health care for the majority.

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