BMDA On Argus Acquisition Of Medical Practices

July 15, 2020 | 3 Comments

“Our disappointment was not because of the sale itself, but because Argus stated that one of the reasons for doing it was to help to better the healthcare of the Island,” the Bermuda Medical Doctors Association said, adding that “a statement that says it ‘will benefit all’, but blatantly only benefits a few, is contradictory to working towards the public good.”

A spokesperson said, “We were surprised to hear of the recent sale of the 2 largest Primary Care Physician practices in the Island, to the largest private Bermuda insurer that also has multiple contracts with the government to manage the country’s most vulnerable populations.

“Our disappointment was not because of the sale itself, but because Argus stated that one of the reasons for doing it was to help to better the healthcare of the Island.

“Given the hard work that several organizations and healthcare bodies have been doing over these last 12-24 months, trying to help shape a system that all would be able to have access to, a statement that says it ‘will benefit all’, but blatantly only benefits a few, is contradictory to working towards the public good. Similar entities in the USA known as HMOs have restricted patient’s choices and have not been proven to reduce costs.

“Over the last 12 months, the BMDA and its members have been working hard to redefine the healthcare landscape in Bermuda, bringing all the stakeholders to the table to not only talk about the escalating cost of healthcare, but also what would be required to make it more equitable for all the citizens of Bermuda.

“Physicians have had conversations with the insurers as well as the Government about the need for change, but not at the expense of patients giving up their autonomy or their healthcare choices in the new landscape of healthcare. All of our directives have been towards developing a system for the benefit of the population as a whole.

“We continue to work with the remaining insurers, as well as employers and healthcare providers, and we are encouraged to hear the Minister of Health state that she is open to working with groups that can provide viable solutions to the crisis of healthcare.

“This Pandemic has hit everyone hard, including healthcare providers, and we are sensitive to our patients’ current heightened needs. But this crisis has also shown that we are not afraid to face challenges, life-threatening ones if need be.

“Many of our colleagues and friends have extended themselves to help Bermuda. This is not because healthcare is a privilege, but because we are privileged to be able to provide you with that care. With this privilege comes a great responsibility.

“The BMDA Executive will be watching the course of action taken by Argus and by the government and firmly advocate for the best for the people of Bermuda first and foremost, as well as equity, fairness, and universal unbiased access.

“Though it has been promised that ‘nothing will change’ in the immediate future, we expect that this seismic shift will affect all of us in various ways sometime in the future. The doctors of Bermuda will stand strong and united for patients first and always.”

In response, an Argus spokesperson said, “Argus looks forward to talking more in the coming weeks to explain how their plans will benefit their clients and Bermuda as a whole.”

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Comments (3)

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  1. BoomBoom says:

    More choices mean better opportunity. We presently have law pertinent to monopoly.
    Who wants an insurance that reduces choice of vendor?
    A doctor is offering a service of which can vary in practicality , need , capability , second opinion , experience , contemporary method…many many reasons formulate reasons for choice…eg. when you say which doctor…it doesn’t stand to reason you require “a witch doctor” with a bone in his nose.
    When you go to a restaurant do you not choose the food you eat?
    Perhaps we need more choice of insurers…instead.
    Insurance is not assurance.
    I request and require more choice NOT less.

  2. BoomBoom says:

    Next you will have scratchers purchasing shoe shops…charging same fee for mass production shoes.

  3. Joe Bloggs says:

    “We continue to work with the remaining insurers, …”

    It seems the BMDA is having a spat with Argus because some of its members are making more money than others. That smacks of jealousy.

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