Doctors in the United States are outraged by a statement by President Donald Trump who said Friday that they would be lying about the number of fatalities as a result of the corona epidemic in the country.
Trump claimed at a campaign rally on Friday that US doctors are lying about the number of Americans who have died from the coronavirus. They would make the numbers higher than they are because they would receive more money for deaths attributable to the virus, the Republican presidential candidate said.
“Our doctors get more money when someone dies from COVID-19. You know that, right?” Trump said at the meeting in Waterford Township, Michigan. He said doctors are being paid “about $ 2,000 more” for deaths from the coronavirus.
The leading US physician organization, American Medical Association (AMA), is outraged by Trump’s statements. “The suggestion that doctors, in the midst of a public health crisis, count or lie too many COVID-19 patients to fill their pockets is a malicious, scandalous and completely misguided charge,” Susan Bailey of the AMA said in a statement.
American Medical Association rips Trump's claim that doctors inflating COVID numbers to get more money: “Malicious, outrageous, and completely misguided" https://t.co/DqB8xypWTq pic.twitter.com/tKaTGEIuvC— The Hill (@thehill) November 1, 2020
“Rather than attacking us and hurling unfounded accusations at doctors, our leaders should follow the science and push for compliance with the public health rules we know work: wearing a face mask, washing hands, and keeping a physical distance. added Bailey.
The American fact checker checker Politifact discovered that since March 27, a hospital is indeed reimbursed 20 percent more for a patient with COVID-19 than for a patient with a comparable respiratory disease. However, this only applies when the patient is insured through Medicare, the national health insurance policy in the US.
Hospitals – not doctors – receive more for these COVID-19 patients because of the measures that a hospital must take to safely treat COVID-19 patients and the impact that COVID-19 has on regular care.
There is according to no evidence Politifact, that doctors in the US are being pressured to make a more frequent diagnosis of COVID-19. Based on excess mortality figures, there are indications that the number of COVID-19 cases in the US is actually underestimated.
Trump downplayed the impact of the corona virus in his country during his election rallies. In the US, where there are presidential elections on Tuesday, nearly 235,000 people died from COVID-19. Of the 9 million people who became infected, two thirds have recovered.