Doctor Shortage 'Fix' Is a Disaster Waiting to Happen
New legislation in Missouri will create a new class of medical license, the "assistant physician." Critics say it will establish a reprehensible dual standard of care, one for the rural and underserved and another for everyone else.
Update: The bill was signed into law on July 10.
From Missouri's Ozark Mountains to its northern plains, a healthcare drama is quietly underway. And it is sure to be the House of Medicine's ruin.
Or its salvation.
It depends who's talking, but I think it's going to be a national disaster because of the dangerous precedent it sets.
Legislation sitting on Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon's desk will, if he signs it by July 14, empower Missouri's medical board to create a new category of doctor's license, "the assistant physician."
This new type of certificate would be handed out to medical school graduates who didn't get into a residency program and who passed Step 1 and 2 exams, but not the most important one, Step 3.
With minimal prior exposure to patients, these young doctors would be licensed to practice just like regular doctors, as long as they only treated patients in the most physician-starved poor and rural areas throughout the state.
This licensing lunacy would allow unqualified clinicians to misdiagnose, misprescribe, and bungle treatments inevitably leading to patient harms too numerous to detail.
The bill's antagonists, and there are many including the American Medical Association's House of Delegates, fear the "Show Me" state will have a reprehensible dual standard of medical care, one for the rural poor and one for everyone else.
- Will More Pioneer ACOs Defect?
- Interventional Radiology No Longer a Sub-Specialty
- Charity HealthCare Conundrum Brewing Among Providers
- NFP Hospitals' Revenue Growth at 'All-Time Low'
- Evidence-Based Practice and Nursing Research: Avoiding Confusion
- Acute Kidney Injury Gets New Focus
- CNO Leads $1M Charge for New Scrubs, Uniforms
- Transforming Cancer Care
- mHealth Tackles Readmissions
- Half of All Primary Care, Internal Medicine Jobs Unfilled in 2013