On Thursday, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney (R.?) gave a speech extolling the virtues of Romneycare (the Massachusetts precursor of Obamacare), while at the same time criticizing Obamacare. We covered the speech here. After listening to it, I can only assume that Governor Romney hasn’t been in Massachusetts for a while.
Some three days before his speech the Massachusetts Medical Society released the results of a recent survey on medical care in the state. (You really should click on that link. The cartoon is worth the time it will take you.)
[F]ewer than half of the state’s primary care practices are accepting new patients, down from 70% in 2007, before former Governor Mitt Romney’s health-care plan came online. The average wait time for a routine checkup with an internist is 48 days. It takes 43 days to secure an appointment with a gastroenterologist for chronic heartburn, up from 36 last year, and 41 days to see an OB/GYN, up from 34 last year.
Emergency room visits have increased, and Massachusetts’ insurance premiums now have the distinction of being among the highest in the country. And, it gets better.
Another notable finding in the Medical Society survey is the provider flight from government health care. Merely 43% of internists and 56% of family physicians accept Commonwealth Care, the heavily subsidized middle-class insurance program.
Overall, medical costs have have risen to such an extent under Romneycare that the state is now considering price controls on medical providers.
That’s not likely to bring more health care providers to Massachusetts.
And, it seems even less likely that Mitt Romney has been back in Massachusetts for a while.