Thursday, December 16, 2010

What's Ahead in 2011

  • The “sick tax” is still with us and not likely to go away in light of a gigantic state deficit.
  • The federal government has yet to fix the flawed Medicare physician payment formula, causing insecurity for our colleagues and our patients.  Will it be fixed in 2011?  I am not holding my breath. . .
  • Federal and state health reform legislation has passed, and I have a mixture of hope and concern about how this will affect our ability to care for our patients.
  • Greater consolidation is occurring among hospitals and clinics in order to survive economically.
  • The Baby Boom generation is nearing retirement age.
  • Some of us are beginning to wonder if we will ever retire, and if so, who will take care of our patients?
Well, this is starting to put me in a sour mood, so I think I’ll turn to my New Year’s Resolutions, which this year focus on me living my beliefs about physician wellness - the theme of my presidency.

  • I resolve to do better to establish and maintain a personal wellness regimen including sensible diet, exercise, work, play, meditation, prayer and cooperation with my colleagues.
  • I resolve to support, affirm or hug a physician daily.
  • I resolve to be part of solutions instead of problems.
  • I will remember why I entered a serving profession and love those whom I have the privilege to serve.
  • I will continue to work with others in the MMA to address the overall wellbeing of my colleagues. 
  • I will be a positive role model for young people considering medicine, for students and residents.
  • I will attend the MMA Day at the Capitol and respectfully educate my legislators who impact our daily lives.
  • I resolve to stop making my resolutions public, really, it’s just too much pressure.
But that’s next year. For this year, please hold me accountable. I will be able to succeed with your encouragement. Please feel free to share here your own concerns and resolutions.  Happy New Year!

Patricia Lindholm, MD,
2010-2011 MMA President
Recently a reporter interviewed me for a story to be published at year’s end about a certain politician’s legacy regarding Minnesota health care. As is often the case, there were positives and negatives to report. I had to carefully consider which statements I was making on behalf of the Minnesota Medical Association, and which opinions were my own.  I hope that I represented MMA’s positions clearly and accurately. Anyway, the end of the year talk got me thinking about my own concerns and hopes for 2011. First, here are some of my top concerns:

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