Doctors and patients in hand

Antonio Carlos Lopes, president of the Brazilian Society of Internal Medicine.

Human beings have limits. The body is not a machine, requires rest, good nutrition, exercise. The mind, in turn, requires tranquility, and good food, leisure, etc.. Fact is that no one can take an insane working hours from 80 hours per week. But this is what has occurred with a significant portion of Brazilian physicians, especially those with greater reliance on supplementary care to ensure survival.

Unfortunately health plans (or most of them) are becoming one of the main villains of contemporary times. Year in, year out, following increasing complaints from consumer bodies, operators fail to repay millions to the coffers of the Unified Health System, are pressures on doctors and hospitals to reduce tests, loud and anticipate harmful interference to other patients. Finally, doctors complain, complain citizens, lives are put at risk and the Brazilians continue to suffer from neglect and lack of assistance.

The doctor tries to move everything to change that. Conversations, hearings, motions, strikes, petitions, articles published in major media. The advances, yet are shy. In contrast, more than 40 million users of health plans are presented every month with fat fees, which must be paid on time, with appropriate annual adjustments.

Today it seems accepted by all parties that has to be included in contracts between physicians and companies clauses that determine adjustments of amounts paid to consultations and procedures. But it is not established, much less agreed between the parties, which will be and how this adjustment will be calculated. It is also clear that physicians should be free to define, along with his patient, the best way to reach a diagnosis and then take all measures necessary for eventual treatment. Unfortunately, once again come up against the lack of independence.

Finally, although we are not harmed by the adoption of Hierarchical Brazilian Classification of Medical Procedures (CBHPM), a list that ranks all the medical procedures available in the country, as complexity, separate specialties. From the definition of the amounts to be paid, all medical procedures would be automatically listed with their respective sizes, making life easier for doctors and health insurance companies.

The CBHPM is the result of hard work, performed for nearly 10 years, the number of medical specialty societies, through endless meetings, studies, surveys, and periodic updates. For the acceptance of this and all other claims of doctors, proceed through several bills in Congress, but at a slow pace, lentíssimos.

What is known is that, once again, doctors and patients, their hands tied, awaiting the course of events will happen soon, saving lives and offering the country a more equitable and efficient health care.