In his column “Doctors caught in Leviathan's maw” , professor Ralph R. Reiland is correct to identify philosopher Ayn Rand's works as providing an intransigent defense against the erosion of physician autonomy that has steadily increased since the creation of Medicare, the biggest socialized medicine scheme that exists in this nation.
What is often neglected in this debate is what Mr. Reiland's column addresses: When health care is declared a right, what happens to the rights of health-care providers forced to provide that care and to the rights of those forced to pay for that care?
As Reiland recognizes, and employs a quote from Ms. Rand to illustrate, all government health-care schemes view health-care providers as mere fuel to be used in a state enterprise, and it is our sanction that must be withdrawn to return a free market and individual sovereignty to this field from which they have been all but eradicated.
Amesh A. Adalja
The writer is a board-certified infectious diseases physician.