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12/02/2013    Robert Kornfeld, DPM

Time for a Universal Insurance Form (Jim Shipley, DPM)

Dr. Shipley, unwittingly, confirms everything that
I have been sharing. He considers himself a victim
of the economy that he chooses to practice in. He
went so far as to compare the per capita income in
the neighborhoods we both practice in. His obvious
message is that I can do what he cannot do because
his patients have no money. So please let me put
this in perspective. When I went into practice, I
was in a very low middle class neighborhood. I
made a great living until the managed care
nonsense kicked in.

Unlike Dr. Shipley, I didn’t take a woe is me
attitude. I was expecting APMA to do something
pro-active for us with an eye on the future. But
nothing happened. And I got mad as hell. So yes,
Dr. Shipley, I moved my practice into a
neighborhood where people have a lot of money.
Simply because I was not willing to work for
peanuts. I opened a second office in a very
wealthy neighborhood in Manhattan not long after
that. And this many years later, I am grateful
that I decided to be more of an advocate for my
own family than that of my low income patients.
What I learned the hard way is that altruism does
not pay the bills and my bill collectors did not
care that I was doing good for a population that
cannot afford to pay their way. A dose of reality
for sure.

What Dr. Shipley and others who feel the same way
forget is that they are not victims of a low
income patient population. They are victims of
greedy insurance companies who have devalued their
services, attacked their self-esteem and in
private are laughing all the way to their yachts,
private planes and mansions. You, on the other
hand, defend yourself against the choices you have
made by rationalizing that your patients can’t
afford to pay you. Keep thinking that way and
eventually you are going to be faced with a much
bigger dose of reality than I was in 1999.

I do not think there is a single podiatrist out
there who can confidently say that things are
getting better for podiatry. On the contrary,
everywhere I go I hear podiatrists complaining
that podiatry sucks. Well I am one who disagrees.
Podiatry is an awesome profession. The reality is
that most of you continue to clamber for
participation with any insurance that will have
you and that is why you find yourself in the
position of hating what you do. You handed your
income over to the insurance companies and they
have all unanimously agreed that you should be
paid less. A lot less. For a lot more work. With
no end to the cuts in sight. And the increasing
regulations are not going to cost them a penny. It
is going to come out of YOUR bottom line.
And as far as Medicare goes, what would ever
convince you that things will ever get better in
your lifetime? The government is behind on loans
that are interest only and continues to borrow.
However, they do not have to borrow from you. It’s
legal for them to pick your pocket with immunity.

I don’t know. Am I the only one who rejects the
insanity? Am I the only one who is willing to call
it like it is and speak out against the madness?
Wake up people. This is exactly how Hitler was
able to do what he did. The ones who thought what
he was doing was wrong did nothing. The ones who
were afraid, cooperated. Don’t wait for APMA to
save you. It won’t happen. All I have to say is
good luck to all of you.

Robert Kornfeld, DPM, Manhasset, NY,

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