July 3, 2008 · Updated 10:45 PM
Being married to a physician on the island, I can more than sympathize with Dr. Hus complaints (News-Times, May 13) about decreasing Medicare payments and the skyrocketing prices of malpractice insurance.
Physicians put their hearts and souls into their training and a lot of us are paying off a second mortgage worth of student loans. However, I would like to be clear these are not strictly specialist issues. All physicians in Washington State are dealing with these financially devastating effects.
We have seen several physicians leave the island because they can make a better living in a different state with less call. You would be hard pressed to find any physician on the island making $325,000 a year with 10 hours of call a month. If Dr. Hu cant cover his expenses, what makes him think Whidbey General would make a tenfold profit if they were to agree to his requests? Whidbey General Hospital has had to deal with these exact reimbursement issues for years.
The impact on primary care physicians has been as great if not greater. Please contact your congressperson or representative. This is yet another example of the Medicare crisis that many in government insist does not exist.