ObamaCare Forcing non-Physicians to Play Doctor?
File this under unintended-but-foreseen consequences.
The massive influx of newly-insured folks in California, and the battery of mandated free services under ObamaCare meets the finite supply of physicians. And quality-of-care takes a back seat to the "fierce urgency of now" in the California legislature.
They are working on proposals that would allow physician assistants to treat more patients and nurse practitioners to set up independent practices. Pharmacists and optometrists could act as primary care providers, diagnosing and managing some chronic illnesses, such as diabetes and high-blood pressure.
Of course, defenders of the status quobama will argue that it's about time these other medical professionals got more respect, and that we busted the doctor's godlike aura. But the Golden State isn't considering these measures to hike the status of the underappreciated, but to deal with the impending tsunami of new office visits.
Supply meets artificially-enhanced demand, and they spawn longer lines, and lower quality of care.
BTW, do California lawmakers think there's a glut of physicians' assistants, nurse practitioners, etc., or that the existing pool of them have been sitting on their stethoscopes wishing they had something to do?