Regulations: The Good, Bad and Ugly?!
Regulation! It’s almost become a dirty word as we struggle under evermore burdensome regulations from federal and state agencies, from private and workers’ compensation insurance carriers, and even from our local hospitals. Yet, what we’re really referring to when we decry “regulation” is over-regulation and/or counterproductive regulation resulting in increased administrative effort and loss of flexibility in decision-making, yet providing little tangible benefit.
But not all regulations are detrimental! Under-regulation can be just as problematic, perhaps even more so. An example of good regulation is the FDA requiring food manufacturers to add folic acid to cereal grains starting in 1998. The result, according to the CDC: over 600 babies being born each year in the U.S. without spina bifida! The financial implication: a yearly healthcare savings of half a billion dollars. So, what we really need is good, sound, appropriate regulation - a Goldilocks regulatory environment.
Each year at the WOA Annual Meeting, time is devoted to discussing impending, significant regulations and our advocacy efforts to respond. Come to the next meeting August 2-5, 2017 in Kauai, Hawaii, to learn more and stay informed! Check it out at www.woa-assn.org.
Omer A. Ilahi, MD
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