Our guest blogger is Nikhil Wagle, MD, co-founder of Doctors for America.
As doctors, we see the effects of our broken health system on our patients every single day. We have seen what happens when our patients are denied the care they need, or when they lack access to preventive care, or when they cannot afford their medicines. Doctors know what’s wrong with our health care system — and have ideas about how to fix it. And yet, when it comes to health reform, doctors voices have not been heard.
Doctors for America is working to change that. We are a grassroots organization that seeks to engage physicians in healthcare reform and give them a voice. Our current membership includes over 11,000 physicians from all 50 states, with more and more members every day. Our goal is to convey the ideas and experiences of physicians to achieve healthcare reform based on four key pillars:
1) affordable coverage
2) expanded access to care
3) high quality care
4) practice environments that allow physicians to focus on patient care.
Incorporating the experiences and perspectives of individual physicians is critical to fashioning a solution to our current healthcare crisis. Right now, we’re in the midst of a nationwide campaign to make physicians’ voices heard on health reform: Voices of Physicians. Over the past two weeks, more than 1,000 physicians have added their names to a national map to share their concerns about the healthcare system. As lawmakers put together health reform legislation, it is imperative that they know physicians’ priorities for reform. Voices of Physicians allows physicians from all across the country – the individuals who see our broken healthcare system firsthand each and every day –- to tell Congress and the public what concerns us most about the current healthcare system, and what can be done to allow us to take better care of our patients.
At Doctors for America, we believe that physicians must continue to make our voices heard on critical issues in health reform. Over the next six weeks, we will launch a series of one-week campaigns, each focused on a specific issue of relevance to the health reform effort. The goal will be to educate physicians and the public about these issues and allow the opinions of physicians to be conveyed to Congress and the media. Together, we will continue to build a strong coalition of physicians and patient and professional organizations committed to health care reform.