Saturday, January 2, 2010

Health Care 2010: Cardiologists Sue Kathleen Sebelius

The American College of Cardiology (ACC) has filed a lawsuit against Kathleen Sebelius, Obama's Secretary of Health and Human Services, for making critical cardiology services unavailable to "the patients who need them most." 
American cardiologists must be truly worried. Joining the ACC in the suit are the American Society of Nuclear Cardiology, the Association of Black Cardiolotists, and the Cardiology Advocacy Alliance.

As reported by the New York Examiner:
The complaint alleges that Sibelius "unlawfully adopted the payment rates for cardiology services in the 2010 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule in a manner that threatens access to patient care and precipitously increases Medicare costs."
The new fee schedule, which went into effect yesterday, January 1, 2010, cuts reimbursements to cardiologists for diagnostic services performed in the doctor's office, particularly diagnostic imaging, as much as 40%.

From PR Newswire:
"These cuts will devastate patient access to care," said Alfred A. Bove, M.D., president of the ACC. "Already practices are closing their doors and their patients have nowhere to turn. Hospitals do not have the capacity or the specialized ability to absorb the influx of patients. Tests will be delayed, diseases will worsen and patients will become sicker and sicker. Many patients, especially those living in rural settings and urban centers will lose their access to critical cardiac care." [quote added 12:08 p.m., emphasis mine]
The cardiologists assert that Health and Human Services made the change in regulation based on shoddy research, namely, a defective survey that did not comply with federal government's own regulations regarding "standards, transparency and review."

No surprise there. An administration that routinely disregards the Constitution cannot be expected to show much interest in compliance with mere regulations. When it comes to transparency and review, Obama and his Obamatons could not have been more flagrant in their disregard for transparency and review throughout the entire healthcare debate.

For those suffering from heart disease, the results of the 2010 regulations will not be pretty. In ObamaSpeak, Death Panels is now pronounced Health and Human Services.

We must keep up the pressure on the House. The Democrats in Congress think the latest Senate version of ObamaCare is a great bill, but we cannot allow them to inflict it on us.


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