medicine, primary care, specialists

AMA- Get out of my mailbox!

I’m not a member of the American Medical Association.  Never have been.  And I have no intention of joining.  Apparently I’m in good company- only about 25% of physicians belong to the organization.

I have multiple reasons for this.  The AMA, at its core, is really nothing more than a political lobbying group.  It exists to protect the interests of doctors.  That being said, their interests really don’t align with mine.  The AMA is incredibly geared towards specialists.  They created the RUC, which works with the Center for Medicare Services to determine payment to physicians.  The majority of RUC members represent specialties, rather than primary care, and very few will argue that it is not responsible for the huge disparity in payment.  I’ll take it a step further and say that we probably can thank the RUC and, by extension, the AMA, for contributing to the shortage of primary care physicians in the USA and the huge amount that we spend on healthcare.

Anyway, it is particularly galling to me that every month I get this in my mailbox:

Looks like a bill, right?  Even what’s inside looks like a bill, at first.
Yeah, that’s right.  These bozos want $420.00.  Sure.  I’ll get right on it.  For good measure, they send me one at home, too.
It does such a good imitation of being a bill that my husband actually tried to pay it once…which is exactly what I think the good folks at the AMA are hoping will happen.  Luckily, I caught him before he mailed out the check.
If you look at what else is in the envelope, it becomes a little more clear.

OMG!  I can get a FREE subscription (valued at $250!!!) to JAMA if I join????  Oh, now I’m sold.  Except…this also came in the mail today.

Yeah, it’s a copy of JAMA.  It comes every month, clogging up my mailbox.  I don’t read it.  I get a great journal summary every month that I read instead.  I never subscribed to JAMA, yet they continue to send it to me.  Every. Week.  For the past 10 years.  That’s over 500 magazines that I never asked for or wanted.  I’ve tried to get them to stop sending it.  No luck.

What’s even more ironic is this leaflet attached to the cover of the magazine.

Renew today or they’ll cut you off!!!!  Don’t delay!!!  If only.  I never send the card back.  And yet, like clockwork, the cycle starts again the next month.


I think that $420 a year probably goes to postal charges.

2 thoughts on “AMA- Get out of my mailbox!”

  1. Hey Marni, very interesting post. I didn't know that the AMA wasn't useful to doctors. Thought everyone was a member. It is always cited in news reports. Side note: check out your last pic of the JAMA and revise – you forgot to do some blurring. -Shannon


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