Because doctors can charge uninsured client any rate but tend to negotiate a rate with insurance carriers, this has allowed them to profit from the care that is provided to the uninsured. If universal health care is adopted, all persons will be covered by an insurance company, resulting in most care having pre-negotiated rates and caps. This will limit the amount of money doctors can make.
Universal health care means that the government decides health care allocation and its costs. At first, it reduces how much it pays doctors, hospitals and nurses. As doctors drop out, the government then rations how much care people get. This ranges from requiring verification before surgery to minimum wait times to simply reducing the number of beds to limit supply. More government officials are selected to review the books, make sure all money is spent correctly and find more cuts - but it is never a manager's salary or secretaries, only the doctors or nurses or even cleaning staff whose wages, benefits and even jobs are cut. All of this reduces quality of care in the name of saving money.
I volunteered in a hospital all throughout high school in the surgery partner with a pre-acceptance to an Osteopathic Medical School. Every doctor I have worked with and every person in that field all say the same thing: "Don't become a doctor, they are going in the toilet." We spend at least 10 years in college, with tens of thousands of dollars (in my case approx. $160,000) to call themselves a doctor. Give us a break.
There are to many people with out health insurance that beg for mercy to have it. The government needs to support these in particular people and should have to help them even though some people can afford it. the government is to blame for the whole fiasco. PEOPLE COME FIRST. The government must help.
Typically health plans limit coverage and payments. Universal health care means that most people would be covered and most likely be restricted to these limits. Perhaps many tests and procedures that may be requested may be denied. It limits what doctors can prescribe and suggest and in turn limits doctors' profits.
For some absurd reason, it is primary care physicians and doctors with specialties crucial for wellness that have repeatedly had their percentage payout from government health care plans reduced. My mother is an OBGYN. She provides basic female health services and delivers babies - two crucial services - but receives hardly enough compensation from some federal programs to cover the cost of goods and materials she used to perform the services. Further proposed federal and state cuts could render rural doctors and hospitals insolvent. This means they will be forced to close their doors, and people will be left without medical care within 100 or more miles. If we cannot fund the system we have now, how could we ever hope to fund universal health care?
As the trend has been going, health insurance companies are dictating what the actual costs are and how much the doctor can make off of it. Eventually, with universal health care, a doctor's salary will be determined on how he can charge and what procedures he can do. Everyone knows how underpaid government workers are, and it will not be any different with doctors. The most impacted doctors will be the specialists, since the health care will determine most procedures as unnecessary.
While the possibility exists that universal health care will not change the profitability with which doctors operate, it seems unlikely that this would be the case. Universal health care, as with all other forms of health insurance, would mandate costs and would do so aggressively in order to reduce its own costs and please the public. Since doctors would have no choice but to accept the universal health care, their profitability would be determined by the universal health care, and would likely decrease.
Because universal health care would mean everyone has the same insurance company, it would bring a lot of doctors' less-than-fair practices into light. With the mess that health care is today, the doctors can get away with charging a fortune for the smallest of acts, and tack on bills for procedures they never even did. Universal health care would bring such practices into light, and thus severely limit a doctors ability to earn more than the procedure should pay.
Doctors shouldn't complain too much about universal health care, because while securing the fiscal sustainability of these programs requires limiting compensation for doctors or other measures that may affect their income, such as only covering certain procedures (to minimize over-treatment), they will obtain a larger customer base and smaller paperwork burdens. But there's no denying that doctors in the U.S. currently are paid more than doctors anywhere else, and the insurance burden imposed on businesses, largely as a consequence of that compensation, is unsustainable. Eventually some version of health care reform will need to reduce the compensation of many doctors--specialists, at least, while primary care physicians (of whom there is apparently a shortage) may need and get an increase in pay.
If the health care system became universal, the reputation of physicians would go down the drain. They have to struggle so many years to get the education and experience they need to get to where they are and if at the end they have no respect in the eyes of the people, it is worthless. The physicians would in turn become careless if they do not get the respect and recognition or importance they feel they should be deserving of and in turn it would ruin their image even further. Having a career in the medical field is one of prestige and if the field dumbs down, their is no question that everything else won't.
No matter what, it is human nature to work harder for a reward. You take away the "reward" and doctors won't have the incentive to get out of bed, on call, in the middle of the night or work longer hours to make sure all surgeries are done or patients are seen in clinic. Although they may still care for others and want to make a difference in this country, they will start to sit back and work "regular hours". Also, when patient's start acting "entitled" to healthcare, the desire to serve goes down. I can assure you if universal healthcare occurs, it will become harder and harder to find available doctors to take care of patients in our country. If they aren't rewarded, then why would they give up their own lives, children births/ graduations, family vacations, etc, just to name a few. They won't. The overall moral will go down significantly and a "needed surgery" that may have previously taken a couple days or a month to schedule, will become multiple year waiting lists. In a universal system, you must pray your child or loved one never gets cancer and needs treatment or you never need a life saving surgery because no matter what the government tells you, those won't be available to you. The loss of life is easier for the government to swallow at that point than to pay for expensive treatment/ procedures. Anyone who believes differently doesn't know anything about healthcare. I speak from experience.
Look at the Canadian system. For example, a rheumatologist there makes about twice as much as a rheumatologist in the US. Policies could be put in effect that dissect the charge master and sort out why certain procedures in the US exactly cost 10 times as much as in Europe. Procedural specialists can earn close to a million or more in certain settings while PCPs make closer to 150K. No good reason why some orthopedists or other specialists should make 10x as much as a PCP. Health care administrators also make exorbitantly more money than they would in similar settings in Europe for example. Why does a hospital administrator make more than a neurosurgeon? And what about insurance administrators? A government run system could save a lot of health care money that is currently wasted just on inflated insurance administration costs.
As a Doctor, I went to school ten years and did all the clinical work, fully expecting my reward to be in seeing my patients. I live in Germany where we have universal health care and have had it 150 years. Only in America would you whine about patient volume and MONEY. If your intricate system of capitalism is so profound, then surely you could figure out a healthcare model to serve you country's people. What if so many people weren't living in squalor, then perhaps more preventive healthcare and nutritious meals would help these unneeded unhealthy situations? FYI, You Doctors and Med students need to lose the God complex. Being a Doctor I a noble JOB. But you are just a well educated person, get over the hubris. Lose profitability, only in America.
Universal Health care simply means everyone is covered and if it is single payer, one entity manages the billing. The fees for a procedure might be set, but a doctor could charge more for, say options, like instant visits, or house calls, or a personal cell phone. (As much of an abomination as I think that is) In other words, the doctor could work around the system.
NB I think that's a terrible thing, but the question, as stated is answered
If you look in other countries with universal health care, such as France, doctors still make three digit salaries. In America, we spend around 32% of our national budget on military. Although this is not necessarily bad, the government could take money out of that section along with a few others and put the money towards universal health care. A doctors budget might go down, but they would still be getting paid appropriately for the work that they do.
The government could go for a policy where it doesn't pay doctors well or it could pay them even better.
People often say if universal health care x,y, and z will happen when x,y, and z are separate policy items that may be decided either way. If voters demand loudly enough that doctors be adequately paid they will be.
If universal health care is available, then a lot of people that formerly did not have insurance would be able to seek out medical care that could not currently seek out a doctor due to costs. Therefore, doctors would have more business, and hence more profitability overall in their professions.
Universal health care is an important facility provided by the government for all its citizens. A doctor's profession is should focus on its service to human-kind more than just making profits. A person can choose to avail the universal health care option or go to a private doctor for the same treatment; therefore doctor's profitability will not be limited by universal healthcare.
An option for healthcare delivery does not equate to a decrease in profitability for doctors. Universal healthcare means an option for more patients, but it does not impose compulsory patronage of the doctors. Furthermore, the entitlement for high wages negates the argument of entitlement for health care. The diploma does not practice. A human being does. If you cannot earn, then it is not the shortcoming of the diploma, or the existence of an alternative for healthcare delivery; It is the failure of an individual's ability and work ethic...Which shouldn't even be a consideration when discussing doctors.