Happy to have left behind corporate practice for rural Minnesota

LETTER — Posted Jan. 12, 2004

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Regarding "While medicine caters to spoiled patients, the truly ill go wanting" (Letters, Dec. 1, 2003): Way to go, Dr. Jason Andrew Hughes!

Nearly two years ago I left my Twin Cities job as an employed corporate physician to start my own internal medicine/pediatrics practice in the poorest county of rural Minnesota. My office is in my house, I make routine house calls and I do not bill any insurances except Medicare. As of January 2004 an office visit starts at $30, with house calls $10 extra, and additional charges as needed based on time. I can do this because my overhead is ridiculously low and I started my practice without debt.

I love making health care affordable for people who otherwise would not get it, and being another choice for those who want it. I am able to provide better quality of care because (1) I limit my practice to what I can reasonably do; and (2) I have more time to spend, both with my patients and the medical literature. There is more to life, and to medicine, than money.

Susan K. Rutten, MD, Osakis, Minn.

Note: This item originally appeared at http://www.ama-assn.org/amednews/2004/01/12/edlt0112.htm.

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