The monthly newsletter came from my medical specialty society. There was an article on how much doctors are being paid, pointing out that in 2009 doctors in my specialty experienced an increase in average income of between 7-12 percent, though specialists in general saw a decrease of about 4 percent.
In a down economy with a lot of people hurting and roughly 10 percent unemployment, doctors have been relatively spared from financial pain. As the deficit commission looks into ways to cut costs, reducing payments to doctors will be considered. I suspect physician organizations will aggressively fight such cuts, pointing out that potential cuts in Medicare would hurt patients.
I don’t want to see patients hurt, but the patriotic side of me says that we doctors shouldn’t be completely spared from the effects of a down economy that is causing our patients to suffer.