Puerto Rico And Its Healthcare Crisis

According to the article “Inminente crisis de salud” by Yaritza Rivera Clemente, published by the newspaper El Nuevo Día on January 19, 2017, during 2009 and 2014 there’s been a reduction of doctors in Puerto Rico of 13,452 to 11,088. Said numbers supports Rafael Rodríguez Mercado’s, Secretary of the Department of Health, statement that there is a lack of general and trauma surgeons, endocrinologists and neurosurgeons. Rodríguez also indicated that the patients of the Reform have been affected with the departure of so many specialists since these are affiliated with the Reform and these patients have been forced to seek treatment at Centro Médico, which in turn has caused that this hospital be visited by a large number of people. During the Public Hearing of the “Proyecto de la Cámara 5” which promulgates the “Ley de Incentivos para la Retención de Profesionales Médicos”, Rodríguez stated that Centro Médico has been receiving patients from Mayaguez and Vieques, which in turn has cause a $494 million dollars deficit. Said project proposes a reduction of the fixed tax rate of 4% of the generated income to doctors who provide services to “Mi Salud” plan or comply with the annual 180 hours of community service.

Meanwhile, Concepción Quiñones de Longo, subsecretary of the Department of Health, stated that there has been a reduction of 8,452 to 6,713 of specialized doctors. Victor Ramos, President of the College of Surgeons, indicated that there is a lack of specialized doctors in the pediatric area, since there are only 2 pediatric neurosurgeons, 3 radiologists and 2 pediatric vascular surgeons.

There isn’t only a problem with the departure of specialized doctors from the country, but doctors have also been affected by insurance companies. That’s why the Health Commission of the House of Representatives will be reviewing and regulating the services provided by insurance companies. Ángela Ávila Marrero, acting executive of the “Administradora de Seguros de Salud” (ASES), stated that insurance companies are the ones who contract the doctors and not the Government and that the actual model that is implemented is one “of coordinated care with the complete risk of the insurance company”.

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Fatal Consequences Of Repealing Obamacare

According to the article “Harvard doctors just revealed how many people will die from repealing Obamacare” by Zach Cartwright, published on U.S.Uncut.com on January 23, 2017, the repealing of the Obamacare is “fatal”. Doctor David Himmelstein and Doctor Steffie Woolhandler, professors of public health at the City University of New York’s Hunter College and lecturers in medicine at Harvard Medical School, agree “that even under the most conservative estimates, getting rid of President Obama’s signature healthcare reform law will result in 43,956 deaths every year.

Both doctors used the findings of the New England Journal of Medicine (NWJM) “that for every 455 people across multiple states who received health insurance through Medicaid expansion, at least one life was saved due to finally being able to see a doctor” in order to reach their number of 43,956 deaths every year. President Trump, House Speaker Paul Ryan and Representative Tom Price have come up with a replacement reform of the Obamacare. Both doctors also argued that the reforms presented to replace the Obamacare “could actually cause even more deaths than they initially predicted”.

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