Maine should decline to build health exchange

We have had the endless debate. We have had the narrow Supreme Court decision and, now, we have had the election.

Looks like ObamaCare is here to stay.

Maine Gov. Paul LePage is now faced with the decision he hoped to never make — whether to build a health care exchange or leave it up to the federal government.

Planning for the exhange was well under way when LePage replaced Democrat John Baldacci in the Blaine House. But LePage, no fan of the federal health care law, stopped that work, pointing out that the fate of the entire law was uncertain.

Well, it's uncertain no longer.

On the surface, the exchanges are an idea that a previous generation of Republicans might have liked. It is based on a robust private insurance market, rather than a single-payer federal solution, and encourages Americans to show responsibility and buy their own insurance.

But in their all-or-nothing opposition to ObamaCare, and by failing to offer a credible alternative to the nation's health care problems, Republicans have shunned a basically solid idea.

Advocates say the exchanges will allow consumers to directly compare plans more easily and select one that best fits their circumstances, like the successful Health Connector in Massachusetts, yes the one built by the original, less "strictly conservative," Mitt Romney.

That site walks consumers through the health insurance buying process and is a model of clarity and convenience.

Absent a health exchange, consumers are left tracking down confusing and contradictory information from individual insurers.

So, the exchanges are key to providing a robust, competitive, private marketplace for people to buy health insurance.

The federal government even offered planning money, some of which Maine received initially, to customize their own exchanges.  And many states have been busy doing just that.

But, a handful of states either quit planning or never started, and are now faced with a Nov. 16 deadline to let the feds know their intentions and have exchanges ready by January 2014.

In previous statements, LePage has indicated a willingness to let Washington do the heavy lifting and construct the exchange.

He should stick by his guns for several reasons:

First, it's late in the game and we've lost a lot of time. Maine, a small state, would end up trying to hire expensive consultants to construct a hurry-up plan.

Secondly, we suspect a governor and administration who disliked the idea from the start would do a half-hearted job and end up with a poorly devised plan.

Finally, our state government has shown a remarkable ineptitude for selecting and running complex computer systems.

This inability predates the LePage administration, and the Department of Health and Human Services has its hands full either replacing, updating or generally figuring out its current computer systems.

The ironic result here is that so many conservative governors usually favor state over federal control.

But, through their refusal to plan, they will end up with exchanges run out of Washington rather than their state capitals.


The opinions expressed in this column reflect the views of the ownership and the editorial board.

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 's picture

Agreed, I doubt the Republican Governor can do a good job.

"Finally, our state government has shown a remarkable ineptitude for selecting and running complex computer systems." Agreed. Some years ago Computerworld found that half of all the massive computer system projects failed. The reasons varied but essentially the cause was too great a scope or too few resources. The state hires contractors instead of developers. Doesn't work for the reasons you mentioned among others.
Let the Feds develop the exchange. It will be done right and on time.


The exchanges

My first reaction was also that the feds should do it because this administration would screw it up. The exchanges do not provide medical care they provide information about medical insurance. I guess that's a really bad thing for R's. As for Papa John's and those other businesses seeking to let go of full time employees to avoid paying for health care, I suspect they are not paying for health care now. That means that under Obamacare these employees will finally have access to affordable health care via the exchanges. It also means your pizza will take longer to arrive, due to fewer employees, and will probably be made by a disgruntled worker so I would check it over before I ate it . As far as I'm concerned these employers who are firing workers, laying off workers, and cutting their hours to make a political point are the poster boys for unionizing. That kind of employee abuse is the reason unions were created in the first place.

Reduce Mainecare, Medicare, etc..eligibility age to zero for all

Do it now....!

I'd rather pay a ten percent sales tax for it than anyone go without healthcare.


MARK GRAVEL's picture

You can reach into your

You can reach into your pocket today and donate to someone’s healthcare. Oh, that is much harder to do than asking your government to force others to pay.

Refuse because our Governor is inept that's a repub for ya

Governor Lepage has no choice ...from the beginning.

It is the people's choice ...and we have spoken ....for Obamacare!

Get it?

The fast track for a one-term governorship is to resist in even the smallest hint of a way at this point ...

You got that, Mr. Lepage?

You're out!

Too many people, especially in Maine, need this and nothing the Editorial Board here or the shirkers at the banks can say will, in the end, change that.

Health exchanges are coming for the needy and the rest of us, too.

And, the only ones complaining are those that have been gouging them ...i.e. the doctors, pharmacists, insurance companies and their political lackeys ....

It's over! ...and the taxpayers are gonna finally get a real break, too.

Rip off sonsas ...

Steve  Dosh's picture

Maine should decline to build health exchange

Sunday 1:11 pm hst ?
We disagree LSJ ®  You are advocating for a similar healthcare system to that of those states that have declined already : TX , AL , GA and MS . No , † y v m . Please no . Not their state educational systems either . Accept the fact that Gov Romney's Obamacare ® is here to stay . Get on the bandwagon . You are either with us or against us Please watch Mike Moore's film about U S citizens having to go to Canada for their health care again . Canada's health care system ( and 1 7 other countries , possibly communist Cuba & China ) remain better than ours . First off , they realize that prevention is the best cure . Secondly , they do not - d e n y - care to anyone , including us Americans when we visit them . i have never visited our sworn enemies and never will . That doesn't mean their health systems are crap .. . the Tea Party is dead ( certainly moribund ) but the Occupy Movement is quite alive and doing helpful activities all you Republicans . Happy Armistice Day . ƒrance ( Europe ) went 89.2 % for Barack Hussein Obama , too , according to my friends there
? /s, Steve , HI

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

Mike Moore's film has the

Mike Moore's film has the same level of credibility as Altitude Al Gore's "Inconvenient Truth"; zero to none.

CRYSTAL WARD's picture

What happened to your states right stand?

So the LSJ wants Maine's Health care exchange to be set up and run out of Washington--this seems a strange postion for people who dislike "things from Washington". Does the LSJ know if making our own would be better for Maine's people-- will a one size fits all plan our of DC work here?? The bottomline should be what will be the very best to deliver quality health care to all people in Maine.
Maine does have talented, intelligent people who can establish and run a computer based system -- DHHS problem was they replaced all the people with experience at one time --

MARK GRAVEL's picture

So why should Maine incur

So why should Maine incur additional costs for the taxpayer to run exchanges when you can push this costs off on all taxpayers in the US. From the point of view of looking out for Maine taxpayers, it makes perfect sense.

 's picture

Comments on comments

I don't know whether there is a shortage of doctors in Maine, or if so, why there is. I know that in Pennsylvania it would have been very unusual to hear a doctor's spokesperson say, "We aren't taking any new patients." Here, it is most medical offices that say this, or that's my impression.

It also takes next to no excuse in the minds of some of the doctors hereabouts to decide not to treat me. An oral surgeon I went to at my dentist's advice, to have some extractions done, refused to do them, saying I was "too anxious." It seems to me normal to be a little anxious when going to a stranger to have a tooth pulled, and this guy's manner certainly did nothing to allay anxiety. He was the only oral surgeon in Farmington, so I had to go to Augusta for my oral surgery (I did find a very nice person to do it there).

Frank, I'm glad you found a doctor who really cares. But when you say, "Don't be afraid to confront the doctor if your not satisfied, remember they work for you, your paying their wages," I can only say this doesn't correspond with my experience, and I have been to several now. They don't think they work for me. They act as if they are doing me a great favor to let me through their office door, and they are ready to throw me back out on the street at any moment.

"Most medical practices have several doctors employed with them. Keep trying until you find the right match." Unfortunately, here in Franklin County, one organization has a near monopoly on doctors, and some of the problems are directly due to that organization's policies, or at least that's what they all hide behind. And it is terribly draining to me to "keep trying" in the sense of going to one office after another and being treated like a bum. My energy level is chronically low. I'm more likely just to go without medical care: at least that doesn't make me worse. That's why I was thinking of running an ad like the one I posted in my first comment. If anyone here knows the name of a doctor who actually has the qualities listed in that ad, please let me know.


FRANK EARLEY's picture

You can't just give in....

You have to start looking at this from YOUR point of view. You can't allow any doctor to intimidate you into compliance. I have learned the hard way, over the past decade, that doctors will and do, try and put you in a position where you are at there mercy. Doctors can seem intimidating to a lot of people, you have to get past that and put your foot down. Find a friend to go with you, check with a lawyer, you have to do what ever it takes to give you the ability to see past that medical degree, and realize, their just working stiffs like the rest of us. Having an oral surgeon refuse treatment due to anxiety, is like a funeral director refusing service because you died. They have these great new inventions like "Nitrous Oxide" and "sodium pentathall", both to cure anxiety. What ever you do, you can't just give up. You have to be your own boss. Check with the hospital, they have counselors that can help, and aim you in the right direction. Good luck.......

 's picture

Reply to Frank Earley

I fully agree when you say, "You can't allow any doctor to intimidate you into compliance." I won't comply with their demands when they are silly procedural rigamaroles that have no medical relevance. But what I need is a doctor who will agree ahead of time not to make such demands. When I am sick is not the time to go to a hostile environment. Even if I am not sick when I go, I will be sick after a trip to the office of a hostile doctor. I have to struggle to control my consumption of calories, caffeine, and sleeping pills, because I am chronically fatigued, lose sleep at the slightest provocation (or sometimes with none), and lose my extremely limited ability to function when I lose sleep. The doctors in this area are VERY bad for my health.

> Find a friend to go with you, check with a lawyer...

Possibly it would help to have my husband go with me, although he hates conflict even more than I do. And I can't think of anything that would totally destroy any relationship with a doctor faster than saying, "I consulted a lawyer, and he says...." They are all paranoid about the idea that a patient will sue them. As if I had the energy or funds to sue doctors--the last thing I am likely to be able to do. I'm just trying to cope, living in an aging body with a number of chronic problems. So far as I know there is no law that says they can't just chuck me out on the street if I refuse to conform to any or every thing they ask.

> Check with the hospital, they have counselors that can help, and
> aim you in the right direction.

Unfortunately, the hospital is part of the problem. I've never had the slightest luck dealing with anybody there. They have "policies" which all the doctors hide behind whenever they feel like doing so, and their policies are very anti-patient.

FRANK EARLEY's picture

Just a couple of thoughts....

First, as mentioned in this article, the premiss was devised in Massachusetts. Don't give the credit to Romney, he just signed the bill into law, he had very little if anything with drafting any plans. This is for Licia, they are out there. I had to fire my new primary care provider about two months ago. He was terrible, he only allowed ten minutes and wrote prescriptions. I went to the Board of directors, after consulting my lawyer, I had never run into this problem before. I am totally disabled with a deteriorating central nervous condition, I need more than a prescription writer. I made some noise, now I have a great doctor who I feel really cares. Don't be afraid to confront the doctor if your not satisfied, remember they work for you, your paying their wages. Most medical practices have several doctors employed with them. Keep trying until you find the right match.
As for the new medical plan, I wouldn't trust LePage to do anything, he has little to no knowledge of medical issues. Having him or DHHS, in charge would scare me to death. Having dealt with DHHS in years past, I give them very low scores on aptitude. I have even less confidence in LePage.......

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

Whom would you put in charge

Whom would you put in charge of it; Dale Mccormick?

 's picture

Yes, Couldn't find anyone better

Yes, Couldn't find anyone better

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

Hahaha...sure, you do.

Hahaha...sure, you do.

 's picture

Money isn't the problem

Here, as in nearly every media article about healthcare issues, it seems to be assumed that our problems about health care are problems about money. I cannot believe that the average citizen thinks this is true. The problem is finding a good doctor--one whom one can visit without coming away sicker than one went in.

I drafted the following ad which I'm thinking of running in local newspapers:

Primary healthcare provider, who
* Wants patients.
* Is more interested in healing and maintaining health than in
bureaucratic protocols.
* Treats human beings, not computer files. Has never won an
award for being the "most wired."
* Answers letters.
* Doesn't hide behind his/her receptionist.
* Doesn't give a hoot whether (s)he knows my date of birth. (I
will cheerfully give my age, since that has medical rele-
vance. My birthday doesn't).
* Is not put off by having a patient who thinks. Even if the
patient is a woman.
* Isn't afraid that I will sue him/her (I won't).
* Doesn't need to prove that (s)he is more powerful than I am.
* Will provide a ballpark estimate of his/her fee.

I don't know whether there are any doctors in Maine who fit this description (there were many of them in Pennsylvania when I lived there). But this is what we need and either don't have in Maine or have far too few of. If we had doctors like these we could work on the problem of how to help the poor pay for their services. But if we don't have any, nobody will get health care.

 's picture

Apparently you don't understand how it works

"Doesn't give a hoot whether (s)he knows my date of birth. (I
will cheerfully give my age, since that has medical rele-
vance. My birthday doesn't)." Americans do not have a system of unique identifiers. SS numbers are not unique. Names are anything but unique. But names with birthdates are as close as anyone can get to uniquely identifying you. You'd best care. Its very medically relevent.

 's picture

It's a myth

I think a lot of people have the same idea you're expressing, Jonathan, but it only seems plausible because it's so often repeated.

There is only one Licia Kuenning in Maine--probably only one in the world. Whereas there are millions of people with my date of birth. None of my doctors in Pennsylvania ever needed to ask my date of birth to know who I was. Frankly, no normal person needs to ask anyone's date of birth to know who they are. How many of your friends, neighbors, and business contacts do you know the birthday of? I don't know the birthday of anyone except a few relatives that I send cards to. That's just not how one gets to know a person.

In the minority of cases where a patient has a common name, and the doctor really isn't sure which of his two or three patients with that name he is speaking to, he can always ask a sensible question, such as "Are you Mary Jones of High Street, or Mary Jones of Maple Avenue?" If there were two Licia Kuennings, and somebody asked me a question like that, I wouldn't be offended about answering it. But that isn't the situation. We are just treated as computer files, by two-legged computers at reception desks, that we have to somehow get past before we can even see the doctor. We are subjected to a ritual, and how this ritual is supposed to affect any actual good we get from the doctor is obscure indeed. I've never seen any practical use made of it.

I am not a computer file. When I meet someone, I want to interact in a friendly, human way. There is no friendly, human way to interact with someone who is asking my date of birth. They're not doing it because they want to know. They're doing it because they have been trained to act like machines.

Any doctor who claims that he can't distinguish me from his other patients unless I recite my date of birth to his receptionist is either stupid or lying. I don't want to entrust my health care to a stupid person or a liar. I am 71 years old, and for most of my life my health care was provided by practitioners who never needed to ask my date of birth and who never confused me with anyone else. They were normal people of normal or better intelligence, and I don't want medical treatment from anyone less than that.

And incidentally, if anyone thinks a person's name isn't a specific enough identifier, they might consider that people usually don't show up at a doctor's office without an appointment. If you walk in and say, "I'm Jonathan Albrecht, and I have a 2:00 appointment with Dr. Smith," the appointment itself is an excellent identifier, because only one person would have a 2:00 appointment with Dr. Smith.

 's picture

Change is difficult to dal with ad so is complexity

I'm a student of early American History. Right now I'm tracing through the history of Dixfield. If you think a name is unique enough of a identifier just spend a few hours with me in the Dixfield Historical Society. One example, Rand White fathered Rand White whose brother was Rand White and whose other brother was james who fathered Rand White. At one moment in time 3 Rand Whites lived in Dixfield during their majority. The only way in the records to tell them apart is by their birthdates or by their genealogy. Birthdates are infinitately simpler. The key here is records. If we didn't keep records, you might be able to get away with names. But now that we keep detail records over long periods of time which are absolutely necessary to track insurance, food poisoning, contagion, patterns of illness etc names are just not enough (Jr., Sr. II, III helped but not enough).

 's picture

Once again (sigh)...

I don't know how many times I have to say it, but for many years I had several excellent doctors in Pennsylvania who gave me good care. Not one of them ever confused me with anyone else. Not one of them thought they needed my date of birth to know who I am. No harm came of these relationships. I got good care. Now that I'm in Maine, I can't get it.

And Jonathan, your experience researching the history of Dixfield is not very relevant to what happens in a doctor's office, for a number of reasons which I won't take the space to spell out. You might figure them out yourself if you think about it.

And incidentally, not one of my doctors in PA hid behind a receptionist who had been programmed to keep patients away from the doctor! as seems to be the case with receptionists in Maine. In PA they had receptionists, but they were nice people who never made things more difficult for me. Here, they are like guard dogs or programmed robots.

All the argument in the world about why it is impossible will not convince someone who has actually experienced good human relationships with medical people. I just need to find a doctor or doctors of that sort here in Maine. If they've all been brainwashed with the date-of-birth dogmas and the religion of computer- worship, then I won't find one, but that seems unlikely. Fads and myths are often embraced by a majority of the public, but there are always a few people who think for themselves. I'll keep looking.

 's picture

The past is difficult to give up

but the time comes when it must be given up.

FRANK EARLEY's picture

Licia, regarding your date of birth....

I've been using the same medical practice for the past ten years. I had the same primary care physician for four years, then one for six years. Just this week I have three appointments, one with a specialist, two with my PCP. It has been this way for years. The receptionists know me by name, they greet me when I meet them in Hanaford's. They are friends of mine. They still ask my date of birth every time. That is how our records are referenced. You couldn't expect someone to remember a hundred different peoples birthdays, I sometimes forget my own. When ever I get prescriptions, which is frequently, at the drive thru at CVS, they greet me by my first name. they still have to ask my date of birth for certain medications. it's the law.
The date of birth is the new social security number. Everything used to be referenced by your SS number until they changed the law. It's nothing personal, they just want to make sure they have the right records for the right person. Try not to let the system scare you, Just keep trying. By the way, as far as your medical information is concerned, you are a computer file. Once the correct records are retrieved, you can go back to being a human being. I'll be making that switch three times this week.....

 's picture

It's still not true

Frank, you've made my point for me, when you say, "The receptionists know me by name, they greet me when I meet them in Hanaford's. They are friends of mine. They still ask my date of birth every time."

They do that because they are programmed to. Not because it serves any useful purpose. Unfortunately our society is full of people who do things because they are programmed to.

You write, "When ever I get prescriptions, which is frequently, at the drive thru at CVS, they greet me by my first name. they still have to ask my date of birth for certain medications. it's the law."

No, they don't have to, and it is NOT the law. If someone there told you it's the law, they lied to you. I get my prescriptions at a friendly local drugstore, where they never ask me my date of birth. I switched my prescriptions there just because I like the friendly atmosphere, and I was thoroughly sick of being asked my date of birth at a chain drugstore.

You continue,

> The date of birth is the new social security number. Everything
> used to be referenced by your SS number

No it didn't--at least when I lived in Pennsylvania I wasn't asked to recite my SS number any more than I was asked to recite my date of birth. Which is to say, never.

Frank you seem to be repeating things that you have heard or read somewhere--and repeating them very uncritically, as if they were revelations from on high, and we were all your pupils. I don't know why you do that, but it's not likely to convince anyone who has any real experience. Once again, I am 71 years old, and have been going to doctors and pharmacists for at least half my life.

> By the way, as far as your medical information is concerned, you
> are a computer file.

No, brother, I ain't. I'm not against computers, and if someone wants to keep his notes about me in a computer I don't object; after all I use a computer too. But a computer is a tool, and in too many medical offices it is treated as a god. I could go on about that for many pages.

> Once the correct records are retrieved, you can go back to being
> a human being.

Uh...friend...I will be a human being from beginning to end. Did you know that there are doctors who don't even have computers? If I knew of one in this area I would go to him or her for my medical needs just to get away from all the nonsense.

"To err is human. To foul up completely takes a computer." And I have seen some good examples of that maxim.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

I cannot help but wonder

I cannot help but wonder whether centralized healthcare, such as Diringo or Medicare, which sets reimbursement rates, has anything to do with the scarcity of good doctors in Maine?

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

Anything? It has everything

Anything? It has everything to do with it.
Whom do you suppose will be the first and loudest to complain and express their outrage when the full impact of oBAMACare kicks in in 2014 and it is exposed for all to see as the abomination that it really is? We will finally get to know and see what is truly in it. I'll be curious to see how they spin that one into being Bush's fault.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

I read an article in the WSJ

I read an article in the WSJ that predicted a number of business sectors, retail being one of them, will cut employee hours to avoid having to participate in Obamacare.

This is just another example of the law of unintended consequences.

 's picture

Not a problem

That's one of the reasons that there will be exchanges.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Now who pays?

Now who pays?

 's picture

The individual

and if their income qualifies them the government subsidies their purchase of private insurance. Works the same as when a company moves its business operations overseas - the government subsidies them.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

I agree with the first part

I agree with the first part of the response. Not sure how you make the link to off-shoring.

 's picture

Just another government subsidy

By the way, how do you reconcile the fact that the Constitution was created to strip the states of their powers with your smaller government philosophy?

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

If my understanding of the

If my understanding of the chronological order of the process is correct, this will force people to either face the monetary penalties of non-participation' or purchase coverage through other sources at higher premiums; correct?

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Participation is also defined

Participation is also defined by the number of employees and the hours they work. As a small business owner, the ACA will not force me into participating if I have a few employees. I don’t recall what the cut off is – more than 30 employees? Also the employee must work at least a set number of hours per week.

That said, if the employer does not have to participate in ACA, then the costs falls on the employee. Hence, the unintended consequence. Fewer employees and fewer hours to avoid ACA.

Zack Lenhert's picture

"That said, if the employer

"That said, if the employer does not have to participate in ACA, then the costs falls on the employee. "

Who did the costs fall on prior to the ACA?

Right now the insured are picking up the costs of the uninsured. Hospitals need to factor in the cost of those that they know will never pay their bill, so they charge more to those that do pay, mainly our insurance companies. These companies then pass along those costs to their customers in the form of higher premiums, which you and I and our employers pay.

So essentially, if a company does not offer health coverage to employees, responsible businesses and insurance customers are SUBSIDIZING health coverage for these businesses "just trying to make profit".

When demand picks up these companies will need to hire to stay competitive. Employee turnover can kill a business, and watch how these businesses service suffers because they can't hold on to halfway competent employees.

"As a small business owner, the ACA will not force me into participating if I have a few employees." By your logic, wouldn't this be an advantage to small businesses? In my opinion, anything that makes small businesses more competitive is a good thing.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

1. “Who did the costs fall on

1. “Who did the costs fall on prior to the ACA?” It depends. The answer depends on the individual; some individuals bore the cost, some used emergency room access, some a combination of the two. Under the ACA we’ll have the above as well as adding tax credits to reimburse lower income individuals to buy insurance, so now we have:

a. Cost, like before, is bore by the individual
b. New - cost is partially bore by the individual and partially by the taxpayer in the form of tax credits.
c. Cost, bore by provider for those who choose to pay the small tax penalty, and makes use of ER’s, as today.
d. Also consider the all the undocumented workers who don’t file income tax returns and traditionally use the ER – ACA will
change nothing there. This group will not pay the tax penalty, but still get service via ER as done today.

Lastly, the taxpayer will effectively continue to subsidize these businesses if that is your point of view unless providers are allowed to deny care. ACA will change little for this group, which I consider a good thing for these small businesses.

2. There you go making decisions for business again. There is not one answer. For example, let’s say competition is highly depended on Cost of Goods Sold (GOGS, the cost of revenue generation). I want to minimize COGS. That said, why would I drive up my GOGS and directly drive up the cost of my good or service while my competition does not. I would only offer the ACA benefit if and only if my bottom line depends on attracting employee skills. Conversely, if my business only requires unskilled or semi-skilled workers, I need not off this to attract employees as there is currently a surplus of labor in this group.

As you see, one size shoe solution does not fit all circumstances. Moreover, the crossover point (ACA benefits or not) are highly dependent on the available labor pool for the skills the business needs to operate. Very few small businesses will take on the added ACA costs (regardless the tax offset) as a humanitarian gesture. Business is about the bottom-line, like it or not.

For those small businesses that participate in ACA , they will drive up the COGS, and they will simply push that costs on to their customers. For those small business that don’t participate, the cost of ACA is pushed to the individual in the form or purchasing insurance or paying the penalty (consider this a tax increase for people making less than $200K and an Obama administration lie to the people – “taxes will not to up on people making less than $200k – SURPRISE.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Okay, I looked up the rules.

Okay, I looked up the rules. Under 50 employees, a business does not have to participate in ACA. Business with 50 "full-time" employees or more, participation is mandatory. The crux is that these businesses simply will have few to no "full-time" employees. A "full-time" employee is defined by the number of hours they work per week. Say good bye to your hours.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

The bottom line is that those

The bottom line is that those who are getting free medical coverage now will continue to get it for free, while the rest of us will probably take it in the shorts.

FRANK EARLEY's picture

You guys are getting.....

You guys are getting Medicare and Medicaid mixed up. There's no shortage of doctors in Maine. I currently am seeing four. I'm on Medicare, and one of my doctors in Boston gets reimbursed the same as my three here in Maine. Medicare is a Federal program, unlike Medicaid or Mainecare. Those two have problems with reimbursement, due to the involvement of the State, and our beloved Gov.Lepage. I get statements every month disclosing what Medicare allows and what it paid, it's pretty close to my old BCBS insurance. It's all spelled out up front. If there's a shortage of anything in this state, its dentist's. Trying to find a dentist in this state, is like pulling teeth. (I couldn't resist).........

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

You've no idea how close you

You've no idea how close you came to me having the parrot grease the plank for you to walk it.0O:-)

Love that, "parrot grease the plank" comment ....yuk yuk squawk

squawk .... Polly want a cracker

squawk ....Polly want a cracker

You know, I'm sure glad I took typing at Edward Little ....and shop, of course.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

You didn't think the Pirate

You didn't think the Pirate was going to grease it himself, did you? 0O:-)

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Okay guys and parrot, this is

Okay guys and parrot, this is conjuring up non-family friendly images.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

Hahaha.....What are you

Hahaha.....What are you thinking, Mark?


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