How Much Money Do Pediatricians Really Make From Vaccines? – WELLNESS AND EQUALITY

How Much Money Do Pediatricians Really Make From Vaccines? – WELLNESS AND EQUALITY

So how much money do doctors really make from vaccines? The average American pediatrician has 1546 patients, though some pediatricians see many more. The vast majority of those patients are very young, perhaps because children transition to a family physician or stop visiting the doctor at all as they grow up. As they table above explains, Blue Cross Blue Shield pays pediatricians $400 per fully vaccinated child. If your pediatrician has just 100 fully-vaccinated patients turning 2 this year, that’s $40,000. Yes, Blue Cross Blue Shield pays your doctor a $40,000 bonus for fully vaccinating 100 patients under the age of 2. If your doctor manages to fully vaccinate 200 patients, that bonus jumps to $80,000.

But here’s the catch: Under Blue Cross Blue Shield’s rules, pediatricians lose the whole bonus unless at least 63% of patients are fully vaccinated, and that includes the flu vaccine. So it’s not just $400 on your child’s head–it could be the whole bonus. To your doctor, your decision to vaccinate your child might be worth $40,000, or much more, depending on the size of his or her practice.

If your pediatrician recommends that your child under the age of 2 receive the flu vaccine–even though the flu vaccine has never been studied in very young children and evidence suggests that the flu vaccine actually weakens a person’s immune system over the long term–ask yourself:  Is my doctor more concerned with selling me vaccines to keep my child healthy or to send his child to private school?

via How Much Money Do Pediatricians Really Make From Vaccines? – WELLNESS AND EQUALITY

WE says: Eve, it sounds like you are interpreting this incentive program as a punishment for failing to vaccinate, rather than as a reward for vaccinating. Regardless of whether you consider it a punishment to miss out on a bonus or a reward to receive a bonus, the bigger question is: How do kickback programs like this influence doctors’ willingness to push vaccines even in the face of evidence that they are unnecessary or harmful? The United States has passed anti-kickback laws in select areas of healthcare, but vaccines are EXEMPT from those anti-kickback laws, a little-known loophole. Kickback programs create dangerous conflicts-of-interest that most patients are completely unaware of. So why is it necessary to exempt vaccines from anti-kickback programs? You mentioned that Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan is the insurance company behind this program. What makes you think that this program is unique to Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan? More likely, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan just happens to be the insurance company that did not password-protect their incentive program or hide it behind a physician-only log-in. Studies show that kickback programs influence doctors’ recommendations and care of patients, which ultimately hurts patients. That’s why many people (outside of those who are benefiting financially) find kickback programs to be “appalling and disgusting.”