US Physicians Define Healthcare Reform Platform on Sermo

Seek to Add Real Sources of Spiraling Healthcare Costs to National Debate

CAMBRIDGE, Mass.--()--Physicians across the nation are speaking out on Sermo (http://www.sermo.com), the world's largest online physician community, about the short fallings in the current healthcare reform bills working their way through Congress. The 110,000 US physicians who use Sermo are becoming more vocal to ensure meaningful reform occurs. The central issue, according to physicians, is that the current bills do not address the real sources of rising healthcare costs. According to Dr. Daniel Palestrant, a surgeon and CEO of Sermo, “Physicians are in a unique position in that they know exactly where the breaks in our healthcare system are. They have been shielding the general public from these realities for years, but realize the current situation is now untenable.”

To date, US physicians have not actively participated in the healthcare debate, but recognizing that traditional institutions like the American Medical Association have failed to accurately address the real issues in healthcare reform, physicians are increasingly using the Sermo platform to actively get involved in reform. 95% of nearly 11,000 physicians who responded to a recent survey on Sermo state that the AMA does not speak for them in endorsing the current House Healthcare bill.

Doctors on Sermo.com say there are some key steps to improving healthcare quality and access while reducing costs. None of those issues are even mentioned in the current versions of the reform bill. Physicians state that true healthcare reform will only succeed if the following issues are addressed:

1. Reform Tort and Malpractice laws.

Benefits to Patients:

  • Reduce unnecessary tests & procedures
  • Reduce overall healthcare costs
  • Improve the doctor-patient relationship

Benefits to Physicians:

  • Reduce malpractice costs
  • Cut down on defensive medicine
  • Speed treatment
2. Streamline billing and make pricing more transparent, by ending government support of the AMA’s proprietary billing codes (CPT Codes).

Benefits to Patients:

  • Allow physicians to spend more time with their patients than filling out paperwork
  • Reduce costs
  • Allow side by side comparisons
  • Allow quality improvement
  • Promote price transparency
  • Stop insurance company manipulation in calculating out-of-network expenses

Benefits to Physicians:

  • Allow physicians to spend more time with their patients than filling out paperwork
  • Eliminate AMA conflict of interest
  • Reduce overall costs in the healthcare system
  • Create transparency in pricing to promote competition
  • Stop insurance company manipulation in calculating out-of-network expenses
  • Speed time to payment
3. Reform the Insurance industry.

Benefits to Patients:

  • Return medical decision making to patients and their physicians
  • End non physician administrators making medical decisions

Benefits to Physicians:

  • Reduce overhead through needless preapprovals and paperwork
  • Eliminate prolonged delays to receiving payment
  • Create guidelines and incentives for timely and accurate payment to physician offices
4. Create a simplified mechanism that aligns payments to physicians with growing needs for preventive medicine.

Benefits to Patients:

  • Improve access to physicians
  • Ensure steady supply of primary care physicians

Benefits to Physicians:

  • Eliminate arbitrary SGR (sustainable growth rate) payment formula
  • Allow market forces to match physician supply and demand
  • Resolve balance billing deficit

Dr. Palestrant goes on to say, “for reform to be effective, we have to address the real sources of spiraling costs. Not one of the issues that physicians consistently point to as being critical to healthcare reform is included in any version of the current bills making their way through Congress now.”

Sermo is a closed community, which can be accessed only by licensed, US physicians. Each physician is verified and credentialed. Select physician debates and the US physicians’ reform platform have been republished and can be viewed by the public and media at www.sermo.com/reform.

About Sermo

Sermo is where more than 110,000 US physicians collaborate on difficult cases, share clinical observations and work together to achieve better patient outcomes than each could individually. Sermo's platform enables physicians to aggregate observations from their daily practice, then rapidly and in large numbers challenge or corroborate each other's opinions. Sermo offers clients in healthcare companies, financial services institutions and government agencies a range of mechanisms to engage directly with US physicians. Leveraging aspects of social network theory, prediction markets and arbitrage, subscribing clients can access a stream of fresh, actionable information on emerging trends and market-changing events in healthcare. Visit http://www.sermo.com.

Follow us on Twitter: twitter.com/sermoteam

Dr. Daniel Palestrant's blog: www.sermo.com/blog

Contacts

Sermo, Inc.
Gina Ashe, 617–245–0105
gashe@sermo.com
or
HUMNEWS
Joy DiBenedetto, 404-558-0858
HUMNEWS@att.net

Contacts

Sermo, Inc.
Gina Ashe, 617–245–0105
gashe@sermo.com
or
HUMNEWS
Joy DiBenedetto, 404-558-0858
HUMNEWS@att.net