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Consumer Reports

Study says public supports cheating docs | (UPI) In a survey, one in four persons said they thought it was alright for a doctor to mislead an insurance company to get payment for a medical service.

The finding highlights the public's lack of trust in the health care system and raises concerns about pressures on doctors to bend the rules, said the authors of the study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

In a survey of prospective jurors, medical researchers found 26 percent thought a doctor should mislead an insurance company to get paid for medical care.

"Both patients and doctors resent restrictions," said study author Dr. Caleb Alexander, research fellow in the Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars Program at the University of Chicago.

"Our study suggests that this backlash against managed care has led to considerable public support for physician 'gaming' to gain access to needed care."

Earlier studies found doctors, frustrated by insurance companies, are willing to misrepresent clinical facts to get patients the care they need.

The reports raised questions about whether the practice made patients mistrust their doctors.

The new study shows many people do not take issue with misrepresenting clinical facts to insurance companies, Alexander said.

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