The Pulse of Natural Health Newsletter

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Is Your State Being Targeted by a Medical Monopoly?

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It may be—if a secretive, private, and powerful organization called the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) gets its way. State-based Action Alerts!

For years now, we have been reporting on the machinations of the FSMB, especially their most recent efforts to pass their Interstate Medical Licensure Compact in as many states as possible.

Don’t be deceived. While this is supposedly a private federation of all seventy state and territorial medical and osteopathic boards, the real forces behind it are hidden—though our evidence suggests it’s the American Medical Association working together with Big Pharma.

As the 2016 legislative session gets underway, a number of states are considering bills that would enact the Interstate Compact. We’ve reposted a recent article on the FSMB here to give you the full story behind this shadowy organization and its push to establish a medical monopoly. If you already know the story, hit this link to see if your state is considering a bill and take action.


New Power Grab by Federation of State Medical Boards Threatens Integrative Medicine

Back in September 2014, the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) released model legislation for the creation of an interstate medical licensing compact. The stated intent of the legislation is to streamline the licensing process for physicians who wish to apply for medical licenses in multiple states. According to Medscape, the model legislation would allow physicians to apply for an expedited license “in a state other than their own without filling out another formal application or providing another set of documents to the other state’s board. If they meet the eligibility requirements specified in the compact, the board in their ‘principal state’ of license can attest to their qualifications, and the second state can license them.”

The compact would take effect only after at least seven states approve the legislation. Once enacted, an Interstate Commission comprised of representatives of each member state would be created to administer the interstate medical licensing compact.

This may look like an innocuous or even useful move by FSMB, but a deeper analysis of this proposal reveals that the opposite is true.

The FSMB—a private trade association that sets standards which are often followed by state medical boards—has historically been no friend to integrative medicine. Despite having no public funding, transparency, or accountability, FSMB wields a tremendous amount of power over the practice of medicine in all fifty states. The organization has demonstrated its antipathy toward natural health since the mid-1990s, when it discussed altering the definition of health fraud to include alternative medical care! It would appear that FSMB considers innovative approaches to healthcare to be nothing more than exercises in “quackery.”

Operating in the dark as it does, it is hard to say who is running the organization or setting its agenda. But we suspect, based on the available evidence, that it is funded and controlled by some combination of the American Medical Association and Big Pharma. If so, it is one of the chief forces behind the kind of corrupt crony medicine we see today. At the very least, states should be wary of following the FSMB’s lead, much less ceding their power to an organization with so little transparency and public accountability.

FSMB claims its proposal “reflects the effort of the state medical boards to develop a dynamic, self-regulatory system of expedited state medical licensure over which the participating states maintain control through a coordinated legislative and administrative process,” and is therefore the “ultimate expression of state authority.” Such a claim, however, is frankly not credible—especially considering that the language of the compact clearly states that rules made by the Interstate Commission would have “the force and effect of statutory law in a member state.”

The Missouri Board of Registration for the Healing Arts echoed these concerns, noting that

the Compact [takes] away the state’s autonomy and authority to grant licenses.…If [an] applicant is deemed “compact eligible” by any other compact state, all member states must grant licensure based on that eligibility. There is no discretion to look at moral character, malpractice history, training irregularities, or other requirements. There is also no opportunity for a state to disagree with another state’s interpretation of the compact requirements or their determination that a particular applicant meets those requirements.

In other words, contrary to FSMB’s claim elsewhere, the interstate compact clearly takes power away from the states.

There is a stunning lack of accountability with the FSMB-created Interstate Commission. While we’ve been critical of the actions of some state medical boards, at least there is some degree of process by which the public can weigh in when rules are created. But when one bad rule can affect at least seven different states, how can the public have any input? Considering FSMB’s record of enmity toward integrative medicine, we should be extremely wary of its proposal.

Another worrisome aspect of FSMB’s interstate compact is its Maintenance of Certification (MOC) requirements. FSMB would require physicians seeking a license through the compact to participate in a credentialing process overseen by one of twenty-four approved medical specialty boards of the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS). While ABMS argues that its recertification process maintains high standards, many physicians see this as little more than a money-making endeavor for ABMS—in fact, the chair of ABMS makes $1,000 a day. Worse, these certifications are often used as a requirement for hospital employment. As with monopolistic nutrition licensure laws, FSMB’s interstate compact could be a similar attempt to exercise undue control over the practice of medicine.

As the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons notes, the compact “would be a giant leap towards entrenching MOC as mandatory for ALL physicians and [would put]in place a new bureaucracy that will most certainly only continue to increase its power over the ability of physicians to practice and the rights of patients to see the physician of their choice.”

In short, FSMB’s proposal is an underhanded attempt to increase its control over the practice of medicine—power that would likely be wielded against integrative doctors. Currently, fourteen states have introduced FSMB’s model legislation. We must vehemently oppose this legislation wherever it pops up.

You may be wondering if it’s even legal for a state to delegate authority to a private organization. It seems that the answer depends on the state. Some states are strict and permit delegation of authority only if the delegating statute provides definitive standards or procedures. Other states with looser standards find the delegation of legislative power okay if the recipient has adequate procedural safeguards.

Political philosopher John Locke argued centuries ago that no legislature can legitimately delegate its power of legislating to any other body. The founders of our country thought they were incorporating this principle in our Constitution. Alas, we have increasingly deviated from this basic English and American common-law principle.


State-based Action Alerts! Check below to see if your state is considering, or has already passed, the FSMB’s Compact, and urge your legislators to oppose or repeal it. Please send your message immediately.

States where legislation is pending:

Alaska

Arizona

Colorado

Kansas

Maryland

Michigan

Mississippi

Nebraska

New Hampshire

Oklahoma

Pennsylvania

Rhode Island

Vermont

Washington

 

States where the compact is enacted:

Alabama

Idaho

Illinois

Iowa

Minnesota

Montana

Nevada

South Dakota

Utah

West Virginia

Wisconsin

Wyoming

 

Other articles in this week’s Pulse of Natural Health:

HSAs Should Cover Supplements!

Tide Turning against Ag-Gag Laws?

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  • Wondering Woman

    It should be quite obvious who is behind this movement – the same one world global government, aka the new world order, which has already gave us the most corrupt government we have ever had, with all the corrupt, fully armed alphabet soup agencies all aimed at working against us, poisoning our water supply, food chain, and medicines, etc. The FDA, USDA, BLM, EPA, CDC, UN, etc. that we are told are to protect us, but they all are working hand in hand to reduce the worldwide population by 95%, which is why we get untested medicines with such harmful undesired side effects, while keeping all natural cures hidden from public knowledge.

    • Da Shan

      “government” run by plutocrats. It isn’t a “government” run by PEOPLE. (Do you remember this: WE THE PEOPLE…. OF THE PEOPLE, BY THE PEOPLE, FOR THE PEOPLE) All of the alphabet bureaucracies you listed above is run by former corporatists, (execs and attorneys), who continue to be tied to those corporations. But there are those who insist that “free market” is synonymous with “liberty” and democracy. “Government overreach” is considered evil but allowing the overreach of corporatists is condoned and encouraged. Everybody wants to blame “the current administration” but the current administration is as entrenched in the definitions, systems, and procedures created by “government by corporate” as the rest of us. Here’s a heads up: every human culture around the world, since before recorded history has had one or another system/tradition of caring for sick, injured, and dying people. In the 20th Century, the practice of medicine was replaced with the health care industry. The big issue today is how to get everybody “covered”, not how to get them well when they’re hurt or sick. We call health insurance “health care”. Insurance executives make medical decisions based on the profitability of that decision. We used to have “First, do no harm…” Today, we have HIPAA and ACA as the foundation of our medical ethic. Get CORPORATE out of my doctor’s office.

      • Deedon4

        “But there are those who insist that “free market” is synonymous with “liberty” and democracy.” TRUE free market is synonymous with Liberty — not with democracy. Our government is supposed to be a Republic, not a democracy. When the government gets into the business of playing favorites, be it for corporations or other groups of people, it is no longer a Republic and the people are no longer free. Get the government back to abiding by the US Constitution and freedom will return.

        • Da Shan

          “Our government is supposed to be a Republic, not a democracy. ” What are the first three words of the Constitution, (which you praise so highly)? Do you even know off the top of your head or are you going to have to google it? SMH.

          • MsProDemocracy

            The US is a democratic republic, meaning we send representatives to the legislature. The only time we are a real democracy is when we get to vote in the general election to choose a president, senators, etc.–unless the game is rigged as it was in 2000 and 2004!

          • Deedon4

            I trust you mean the first three words of the Preamble to the Constitution. They are “We the People”. I did not have to use a search engine because I already knew those words. I also have more than one copy of the US Constitution. The words “We the People” just identify who it is establishing the Constitution. The Constitution is for a Republic. We vote for our choice of the presidential candidates but not for the actual president. We are choosing the Electors who will vote on our behalf , in the electoral college, for the president of THEIR choice. They cannot be forced to vote for the candidate that received the most votes in their state in the general election.

            Note that until the 17th amendment was passed, the state governments chose the Senators for their state. The concept was that the Senators would do what the state needed to protect it from Federal overreach. There are those who believe the 17th amendment was never legally ratified by enough states to become an amendment. However, if this is true, there was never a challenge to it. This was one of the moves intended to convert us from a Republic to a Democracy.

          • Da Shan

            Cool! All trollishness aside, thanks for enlightening me on that, (the 17th amendment thing) Below, you said, “we send representatives to the legislature”. WE send REPRESENTATIVES. But there is a huge faction within our government who has forgotten that they’re supposed to be working to represent US, NOT CORPORATE. TPP, Dark Act, COOL, marijuana legalization… a MAJORITY of Americans do not want TPP to be ratified, but Repugnicans passed it anyway. An overwhelming majority of Americans want GMO foods labeled, REPUBLICANS passed the Dark Act and shot down Country of Origin Labeling. A Majority of Americans want cannabis legal; it’s not. Republicans forget who they work for after election day. You’re right; it’s supposed to be a DEMOCRATIC Republic, not a plutocratic republic. I’m sorry, but political conservatives have historically been very TOXIC to our “democratic republic”

          • Deedon4

            I want government to get out of the way of the people and simply do the things authorized by the Constitution. Although I don’t use drugs of any kind I believe cannabis should be legal. I also don’t want TPP ratified. In general I agree with your view on all of the issues you listed.

            But don’t be fooled. It is not just the Republicans passing the bad laws. Just as many get passed when the Democrats have the power. The two parties are just two sides of the same coin. They report to the same ‘bosses’.

      • nursenut1

        Great post

  • Suzy

    Here. Here! I concur.

    • I care

      Yeah, and some Doctor’s should tell women not after 2 think.

  • I care

    Well so true? This Jan. we had gotten an extra 70.00 added to my husband ins. When I asked I was told ? Well your husband turned one year older? WHAT!!!!!!! So for each year that a senior that is no 65 just yet but had his SSI. And is NOW going to pay 657.00 each month? WOW ! Were is our OBAMA CARE? We both worked hard for over 45 years and saved and payed off our cars and in 2 years our home will be payed off. We are INSULTED by this. And my sisters and brothers who never worked and live of aid get better care and low cost rent? Now this guy Sanders will give more free things and make the DEBT BIGGER? Who will pay for it ? us the ones who worked and saved and went to school for that great job, NOT FAIR…. NOT RIGHT THAT WE SENIORS HAVE TO PAY BECAUSE WE SET OUR SELF UP FOR OUR OLD AGE. I am a Mexican old woman and I am mad. We did all the right things, and our kids have done all the right thing for WHAT? SO THE INS CO. COULD BLEED US. SO MUCH FOR BLUE CROSS AND IT PARTNER.

    • Da Shan

      When INSURANCE is out of the practice of medicine, it will work like it’s supposed to. Health INSURANCE is NOT health CARE. Be sure you’re picking the right battle.

      • I care

        I was at the dr’s one day, mom comes in with 4 kids and one more on the way, I looked up it was my sisters kid. She was the mom of all them kids and one more? and free care? NO ! NOT FREE YOU AND I PAY FOR IT. I ask where is your husband? In jail!!!!!! WHAT!!!!!!!!!! DEBT, DEBT, DEBT, IS ALL IF SEE

      • I care

        Ins is to keep me right!!!!! If I break a leg I get it fixed. Health care if what I do to keep up my body that’s comes under the heading of no drinking the whole thing, not smoking that 8.00 pack, not eating that huge meal? That’s my part. the rest is under DAMN FELL DOWN BROKE MY LEG? WHY!! KIND OF WHEN A CAR RUNS A RED LIGHT AND HIT YOUR NEW CAR, DAMN HATE THAT WHEN THAT HAPPENS.

    • publiclobbyist

      Please don’t give up on Mr. Sanders. His single-payer system of healthcare will eliminate the insurance companies–that will free up a lot of money. As for taxes, only those rich Wall Street types who have been the parasites on our society will be targeted with significantly higher taxes. As far as SSI is concerned, he has proposed greater benefits, not less. As far as the debt is concerned, Mr. Sanders was one of the very few who voted against the Iraqi war and we all know the trillions that were put on the backs of the taxpayers on account of that phoney war.

      • Mary Elizabeth VonDras

        Sanders is the ONLY choice; every other candidate is out for themselves, the 1-percent, and in the case of the “Conservative” GOP (except perhaps for Trump); They are in the pocket of the Koch Brothers’ ALEC playbook, which has already turned my state of WI into a withered, profiteering racket, passing laws that make the state and its residents vulnerable to out of state privatization-for-profit corporate interests, defended (to the point of gross negligence) critical infrastructure and public education, disenfranchised collective bargaining among state employees; basically, the GOP has instituted tyranny, and no one has been able to stop them, nor has any federal authority stepped in to advocate for the rights of the citizens. You may say, “Why did people vote these suckers in?!” and the truth would be that the Koch Brothers generously funded a slick PR campaign for the “Recall” election, and possibly had a hand in vote tapering via the state purchased polling software.

        • I care

          If I was on welfare I would get free care

        • I care

          WHO WILL PAY??????? WHERE THE MONEY COMING FROM?????? THAT’S RIGHT THE MIDDLE CLASS

          • Mary Elizabeth VonDras

            See my reply above!

    • Mary Elizabeth VonDras

      You might want to check whether this price hike based on age is now illegal under the affordable care act; sadly, young women (myself included) have been overcharged for health insurance for decades based on the possibility of pregnancy, and this practice is now illegal (I believe) thanks to the ACA.

      • I care

        No Saunders is not the right thing? Think about who pays? we will only get in deeper in debt! Where will the money come from? We need to make sure that people stop and take accountability, That will come under how many kids can i have and have ins. for ? The county is a mess and due to a lot of things that people do not want to face and talk about is just that. I come from a family of ten and my mom did not think what she was doing to us. We grew up always thinking that someone will take care of us, YES IT WAS CALLED WELFARE. My mothers did not tell her kids how to get a job or go to school . Our county is in a mess and each day i see my family without a job but yes they make for kids on my back and your back. We have a problem and that problem is at home . I am a 68 year old women and worked hard all my life, for what to see my sister and brother on welfare and low income housing? WOW what did I do wrong !! I GOT A LIFE AND A JOB AND WENT TO SCHOOL AND I A MEXICAN AND I ONLY HAD 2 KIDS SO THEY COULD GO TO SCHOOL. I find the parents need to make kids know that we have no free ride? Look where we are? It is called DEBT, DEBT, AND TRUMP RIGHT MAKE THEM FEAR US AND COME IN AMERICA THE RIGHT WAY, NO FREE RIDE AND THAT GO’S TO MY OWN FAMILY, THINK HOW MANY FAMILIES JUST LIKE MINE ARE MESSING UP THIS COUNTY. HOW DO YOU STOP DEBT, NUMBER HOW MANY KIDS YOU CAN FEED AND INS AND HOW MUCH CAN I PAY FOR??????? By doing doing some changes in life you will find less prisons, less homeless, less wars, less killings. What make wars? WARS A MADE BY PEOPLE WHO ARE HUNGRY,POOR, AND TAKE WHAT IS NOT THEIRS TO HAVE. STAY LAZY, STAY STUPID, AND THINK THAT WE OWE YOU THE LOSER SOMETHING, THEN WE WILL NEVER BE OUT OF OUR MESS. WE ARE THE PEOPLE NOT THEM, THEY NEED TO HEAR US, TRUMP IS LOUD AND A CLOWN BUT HE MAKE ME SMILE ALL THE WAY AS HE HELPS US FIX IT, HE CAN NOT FIX IT ALONE, HE NEEDS OUR HELP, NOT LIKE OBAMA WHO LIES AND WILL DO . THE REAL PROBLEM IS US AND IT START AT HOME. TEACH OUR KIDS THAT WE HAVE NO FREE RIDE. NO LIKE MY FAMILY? FACE THE REAL FACTS WELFARE IS OUR DOWN FALL.

        • Mary Elizabeth VonDras

          Bernie Sanders is not talking about a “free ride,” but instead, cutting out the corruption at the top, meaning making rich and super rich corporations start to pay their fair share of taxes (a policy which ALL of the Republican Candidates and Hillary Clinton DONT WANT TO HAPPEN, AND OPENLY PROPOSE MORE TAX BREAKS and FREEDOMS for corporations to manipulate workers for increased profit, and likewise continue to pollute the environment with GREATER FREEDOM and LESS OVERSIGHT).

          yOu are absolutely right that the American family is a mess. Part of the reason is that BIG BUSINESS has flooded our world with processed foods, made it harder and more expensive to get healthy (people work long hours and are paid so low that they can barely get by; getting a college degree brings major debt and also just barely getting by. If THE PEOPLE elect a PRESIDENT AND A CONGRESS, AND LCAL LEADERS who will work to undo the absolute control that BIG CORPORATE MONEY has over our society, and by REGULATING business so that it no longer EXPLOITS WORKERS (as it does in states where the intentionally misleading “Right To Work,” (pro-corporate laws that give corporations the power to make workers work more hours for less pay, make it easier to fire workers, undermines unions and professional trademan recognition (such as master welder, apprentice, etc. so that they can get away with lower quality on state contracts and greater profit))—-undoing all of these unsavory practices will make the work environment better paying, more respectful of employees, etc.. Home life starts to get better when people actually get something from hard work, some actual money in their pocket.

          It is easy to say that the above is just a “dream,” but many other countries have already succeeded in doing so. We can stay in this rut of crappy American living, or DEMAND CHANGE BY JOINNG TOGETHER AND VOTING TOGETHER. What do you have to lose?

  • publiclobbyist

    Doctor’s bury their mistakes–forget this at your peril! Instead of less licensing, we should have spot checks and reviews of the medical treatment of random patients with proper consent, of course. When an MD (in NJ) can issue you a dear John letter because you want your lab results ahead of the visit, there is something seriously wrong in our country.

  • Mary Elizabeth VonDras

    I’m from WI, and have state employee health insurance, and effective January 2016, I discovered that the state plan only covers the BRAND NAME version of levothyroid, a very common, and very-cheap-in-generic-form drug. OUR GOVERNOR, Scott Walker, has completely sold out the common good of state employees to profiteering corporate allies. AMERICA MUST VOTE VERY CAREFULLY IN THE UPCOMING PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION, or this tyranny will be nationwide.

    • MsProDemocracy

      In other words–don’t vote Republican. I’m for Bernie Sanders. But for him to be effective we need progressives in Congress and the Senate, not Koch brothers’ puppets like Snyder and Scott Walker.

      • Mary Elizabeth VonDras

        We can make it happen! Step by step. But what hasn’t happened, and what really angers me, is that despite the horribly egregious corruption going on, none of the players in WI has been publicly shamed in the least. My question is, how can “the People” shame and penalize the public servants who have crushed democracy, turned our public institutions by underfunding, and continue to lie to our faces by using hallow slogans like “freedom and prosperity” while they ciphon off state tax revenue, waterfront public property and undermine local authority??? We’re stuck with these bozos for several more years. I hate feeling so powerless, voiceless, ineffective in conveying OUTRAGE!

        In response to the question, WHO WILL PAY FOR BERNIES HEALTHCARE PLAN, the same people who pay for it now. There will still be “health insurance,” and we will still pay for it. The difference is that instead of the for-profit insurance companies control of American healthcare “payment processing” and management, a non-profit-govt.-sponsored organization would eliminate the huge, false, mark-up (inflated prices). America is poised to receive HUGE group savings, given how many people we have. Currently, instead of our citizens getting any kind of “group discount” we are getting the exact opposite, we’re getting ABSOLUTELY SHAFTED for NO ADDD VALUE TO US, just because it’s the way that has always been done here. Insurance companies, and drug companies have been raking in the dough AT OUR EXPENSE. As Bernie has stated repeatedly, MANY OTHER COUNTRIES PAY FAR LESS for healthcare and drugs by cutting out the middlemen. Yes, it will suck to be you if you run an insurance company when Bernie is President, but REALLY, SHOULD WE FEEL SORRY TO SEE A GROSSLY OPPORTUNISTIC PRACTICE BE OUTMODED?? N O. W A Y!!!

  • I care

    Will Saunders pay us back for the extra 70.00 hike for the ins?