The federal government is pressuring more and more medical doctors to ask their patients if they own firearms, according to a healthcare professional.
The feds are using Medicare reimbursements along with the new electronic medical record format standardized by the government to coerce doctors to ask patients about their guns and other personal questions, reported Dr. Mark Kestner, who writes for The Murfreesboro Post.
“In essence, the feds are using their control of Medicare reimbursement to manipulate how your physician handles your personal health information,” he wrote. “As part of that process, the doctors are required to seek the answers to a certain number of personal questions from all their patients, including asking about gun ownership.”
The new electronic format allows the information to be made “available to government entities,” Dr. Kestner added.
“The federal Medicare program is structured in such a way that physicians had little choice but to comply with the program,” he continued. “On the one hand, if physicians complied with the program fully by last year they were rewarded with a financial incentive of several thousand dollars.”
“However, if they delayed or failed to agree to provide the data they will be penalized by a certain percentage of Medicare payments going forward.”
“Medicare reimbursement is already quite restricted and often doesn’t cover the actual costs for the services covered,” Dr. Kestner emphasized.
While some doctors are already asking patients about their firearms, it now appears the feds are ramping up this inquisition amid the recent appointment of the new Surgeon General, Dr. Vivek Hallegere Murthy, who called gun ownership “a public health issue.”
“[I’m] tired of politicians playing politics with guns, putting lives at risk because they’re scared of [the] NRA,” he tweeted out in 2012. “Guns are a health care issue.”
About a year before President Obama nominated Dr. Murthy for Surgeon General, the White House released the president’s gun control agenda which reminded the public that Obamacare allowed doctors to ask patients about their firearms.
“Some have incorrectly claimed that language in the Affordable Care Act prohibits doctors from asking their patients about guns and gun safety,” the press release stated. “Medical groups also continue to fight against state laws attempting to ban doctors from asking these questions.”
“The Administration will issue guidance clarifying that the Affordable Care Act does not prohibit or otherwise regulate communication between doctors and patients, including about firearms.”