December 21st, 2009
02:02 PM ET
11 months ago

Doctors' group endorses Senate health care bill

American Medical Association President-elect Dr. Cecil Wilson announced on Monday his organization's support for the Senate health care reform bill.
American Medical Association President-elect Dr. Cecil Wilson announced on Monday his organization's support for the Senate health care reform bill.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – The American Medical Association, a traditional opponent of health care reform, on Monday endorsed the Senate health care bill nearing a final vote in the chamber.

Dr. Cecil Wilson, president-elect of the nation's largest advocacy group for doctors, said at a news conference that the amended bill would solve major problems with the health care system.

"The AMA is pleased to announce its support for passage of the amended ... bill," said Wilson, an internist from Winter Park, Florida. At the same time, Wilson said, the AMA will continue working for additional changes in a final health care bill that results from merging the Senate bill and a House version passed last month.

Wilson became president-elect of the AMA in June, and will serve in that role for a year before becoming president in June 2010.

The AMA has long opposed the kind of health care reform measures contained in the Senate and House bills. It announced this year that it supported health care reform efforts, but had concerns about specific issues such as a proposed expansion of Medicare coverage.

The expanded Medicare provision has been cut from the Senate bill.


Filed under: Health care
soundoff (94 Responses)
  1. stevegee

    This bill is an abomination and will undermine our republic, and bankrupt the country.

    All the Democrats (aka socialists) will be thrown out of office in November 2010. Then we can repeal this unconstitutional assault on our freedom and liberty.

    December 21, 2009 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  2. MD for Reform

    As a doctor, I feel this is a step in the right direction. All too often I am stopped DEAD in my tracks from saving a life because some insurance company wants to ditch their long time paying customer.

    It truly amazes me at times how enthusiastic some of the insurance companies are to kill people that are in my office. I want to be in the business of saving lives, but the insurance companies make certain it's difficult to do.

    December 21, 2009 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  3. billy123

    I wonder how GOP and FOX will spend this to make the AMA look like the end is near for the world.

    December 21, 2009 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  4. Christian Values

    LIP December 21st, 2009 3:40 pm ET

    My mother was recently hospitalized and the topic of conversation in the hospital was health care and everyone, to include the doctors do not like nor do they endorse the current health care bill. They said that the AMA as an organization may support it, but the doctors don't
    ---------------------–
    Wow, so they assembled the entire faculty in front of you and had that conversation? What a treat it must have been for you on that grand day! Then again, perhaps you are a very impressionable and naive person.

    (my bet is on the latter od the two). My Brother is a doctor, and he certainly supports it. He cites the many ways it will free him up to TREAT patients rather then fill out 500 different types of forms. He cites how he would prefer talking to a government agent concerning viable treatments to SAVE lives, rather then treatments that save MONEY (which winds up in the death of MANY patients).

    December 21, 2009 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  5. Joseph Wiedermann MD, FACC, FSCAI

    I find it quite amusing to see so many comments castigating the AMA as "liberal" in some way. Most of us do not belong to the AMA because for years it has been a retrograde, conservative bastion representing only the most reactionary physicians. In fact, those of us who are not part of the AMA are rather pleased to see it taking this unexpectedly rational position. Approximately 70% of physicians, in multiple surveys, support this health care reform bill. It is far from ideal. A single payer system would be better for patients and physicians, but at least it's a start.

    December 21, 2009 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  6. mjm

    This isn't a health care bill. It's a spending bill. It will do nothing for us other than increase the deficit, decrease the value of the dollar, and weaken not only our economy but the world economy as well.

    But hey....as long as the AMA, AARP and 42% of Americans want it...
    I don’t suppose the AMA actually read the bill….did they?
    Did anyone other than Reid read it?

    December 21, 2009 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  7. michael armstrong sr. TX.

    Is Dr. Cecil a yankee or confederat .

    December 21, 2009 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  8. Art

    If you want to find out why doctors support this health care bill, I wonder if it would be a good start to.... follow the money!

    December 21, 2009 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  9. Will

    we need healthcare reform people now just shutup

    December 21, 2009 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  10. Dan'l

    I'm 100% in support of medical insurance coverage reform but 100% against Congress causing that reform. I simply do not trust a group that places their own self-interests in front of the public's and "shazam.." declare the reform to be humanitarian. Why wasn't the entire bill exposed to public scrutiny before both sides of the aisle fell into accusatory disgrace? I've about had it. I'm seriously thinking of voting Independent and not wasting my vote on self-sustaining, life-long, pocket-stuffing, pork chasers of either party. Reform Congress and their cronies will fall into line.

    December 21, 2009 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  11. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Long before this debate ever started these doctors wrote and endorsed an article for healthcare reform before Obama became President. It's taken these doctors a long time to be heard and we need to listen.

    December 21, 2009 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  12. Art

    MD For Reform stated: "All too often I am stopped DEAD in my tracks from saving a life because some insurance company wants to ditch their long time paying customer." Wow! Now there is someone who is motivated to save lives! I think that I want THAT doctor as mine! What a great DOCTOR(?) ! He stops saving a life because the long paying customer's insurance company ditches him! Well, well, the truth comes out!

    December 21, 2009 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  13. ATL Guy

    The Republicans thought that the CBO would kill the bill for them. It didn't so they now hate the CBO. They thought that the AARP would kill the bill for them. They don't so now the Republicans hate them too. They thought that the AMA would kill the bill for them; they don't and the Republicans hate them too. There comes a time when the rhetoric becomes more devoid of facts and more silly. The Republicans will get their comeuppance. How can you explain not voting to end recissions and denials for pre-existing conditions? That will be their fight going into the 2010 elections.

    December 21, 2009 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  14. Shawn

    It's totally obvious to anybody with a brain how much Republicans truly hate the American people.

    December 21, 2009 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  15. Will

    obama is doing a great job

    December 21, 2009 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  16. Donald

    The Republicans (GOP) tried every tactics to derail the Health Care Reform bill. Well I must say it is sad to see a group of people who say they live according to Godly values tried to prevent other deserving Americans (30 million) not illegal immigrant, the benefit of having health insurance. Earlier on in the year the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) reported that certain federal initiatives would negatively affected the federal deficit. At that time the GOP trumpeted the CBO's report as the standard of federal financial accountability. Well the same CBO is now reporting that the Senate's Health Care Reform bill when signed into law will reduce the deificit by $132 billion in the next decade (2010 – 2019) and by $1.3 trillion in the next decade (2020 – 2029) while providing coverage and will positively affect those who now have. Yet the GOP are saying that the deficit will increase. It is either that the CBO is not reliable or it is. I guess if the GOP are not running the show, even that which they had endorsed is now public enemy number one of the American people. Now even the American Medical Association (AMA)is on board with the current reform bill. I guess from the GOP's perspective the AMA is also against the American people. The GOP needs to remember Jesus actions and words. He showed kindness to the less fortunate and said, "Do unto others as you would like for them to do unto you. God bless America.

    December 21, 2009 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  17. sherry

    Imagine that....what say you repub's.....Oh yea you dont go for it because Obama wants it.

    December 21, 2009 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  18. Lynda/Minnesota

    Billy123: When in doubt about FOX NEWS spin, one only needs to read the comments coming from the right...

    The message for today: Most doctor's don't participate in AMA, thus, the AMA endorsement is valueless.

    And, our country is going to h*ll.

    December 21, 2009 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  19. mjm

    "My Brother is a doctor, and he certainly supports it. He cites the many ways it will free him up to TREAT patients rather then fill out 500 different types of forms."

    Weak doctors support this bill. Is your brother terrible at his job? Because that would explain his support for it.

    Tell your brother that this bill will not help his practice and he needs to work a little harder at it himself.

    December 21, 2009 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  20. kenny

    as a surgeon, it is impossible to support the bill in its current form. wondering how american people will enjoy their care being regulated by the government. if you're not familiar with VA care... then get used to it.... that is the future that we are all looking at.

    December 21, 2009 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  21. Beverly in NC

    GREAT JOB DEMOCRATS!

    The Party of the People has brought us healthcare reform despite all the lying, stoop to any level, negative, obstructionist Republicans who have NOT DONE ONE SINGLE THING for America this entire year.

    Their plan was for America to fail. Their plan was to kill healthcare reform and to hell with how many Americans it would kill and bankrupt in the process. They have voted NO on every single piece of legislation. They support racist lunatic groups who carry outrageously racist signs and carry loaded weapons to their fake rallies paid for by the Republican lie machine – FOX.

    Thank you President Obama, Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi for standing up for the best interest of the American People and getting these healthcare bills passed. Americans will voting for the DO EVERYTHING FOR AMERICANS Democratic Party next year. They have stood strong in restoring our nation and passing legislation to help as many People as possible. Democrats are working for the People. Republicans work for their white-only, elite, rich friends who run the large corporations and industries that abuse American workers, deny us the right to healthcare, and call for our failure.

    Thank you to the Democratic Party for working hard for the People and passing historic legislation to stop the abuses of the insurance monopoly and for showing compassion and morality and humanity in trying to make our lives better and restoring our country.

    Let's give Democrats an even bigger landslide victory in 2010 to show Republicans we totally reject their so-called values and treason to America.

    December 21, 2009 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  22. JM

    Charlotte,

    Pot meet kettle. You have your nerve. I have a doctorate, can easily understand the language in the bill and still oppose it. If anyone is not smart enough to comprehend technical language, it is you.

    December 21, 2009 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  23. LacrosseMom

    MOST everyone I know, with the exception of two Republicans, WANT the Healthcare Bill passed! Including several friends who are doctors!

    EVERY AMERICAN whose 20-something-kid has no healthcare; every person who has lost their job and does not have healthcare. Every American who is facing a medical crisis; whose loved one is sick and whose healthcare refuses to pay wants the Healthcare Bill passed!

    45,000 Americans died this year because they did not have healthcare. When a tragedy like the Fort Hood tragedy happens, everyone mourns, flags fly at half mast; people have vigils; pray.

    However, we, Americans are silent, about the 45,000 Americans who HAVE DIED THIS YEAR because they did not have healthcare. And the millions more who do not have healthcare and pray they do not get sick!

    We call ourselves a Christian Nation? Really?

    December 21, 2009 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  24. MD for Reform

    Art December 21st, 2009 4:24 pm ET

    MD For Reform stated: "All too often I am stopped DEAD in my tracks from saving a life because some insurance company wants to ditch their long time paying customer." Wow! Now there is someone who is motivated to save lives! I think that I want THAT doctor as mine! What a great DOCTOR(?) ! He stops saving a life because the long paying customer's insurance company ditches him! Well, well, the truth comes out!
    ---------------------------–
    I see you have an issue with Doctors in favor of the reform. When the facts aren't what you want them to be, you resort to sarcasm? I suggest you adopt a more intelligent strategy if you aspire to sway peoples opinion.

    You are welcome to get a second opinion if you wish.

    December 21, 2009 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  25. TMart

    It seems okay by me. Why would it NOT be viewed as a simple example of economics? 30 million more people will have health insurance, and therefore the demand for health services will increase. Because of that, there will be a need for more medical personnel, clinics, and hospitals. It should be a boon for the medical industry. Why would anybody complain about this?

    December 21, 2009 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
1 2 3 4