By Carol Paris, M.D.

On Nov. 29, the American Medical Association endorsed Dr. Tom Price, orthopedic surgeon and U.S. representative, for secretary of Health and Human Services. And I am once again worried that the lay public sees this endorsement and assumes that the AMA represents the majority of American physicians, including me. It does not.

As I wrote in 2009, the AMA represents less than one-third of America’s physicians and half of those are retired.

The AMA’s longstanding opposition to every effort to improve health care financing, including its opposition to Medicare in the 1960s and to single payer in the 2009 reform debate, has resulted in decades of needless and countless morbidity and mortality.

The AMA says its mission is to promote the art and science of medicine and the betterment of public health. But its actions continue to reveal that it is primarily a trade association looking out for the financial interests of its members.

If you are a member of the AMA and you support the mission of Physicians for a National Health Program, Improved and Expanded Medicare for All, then I urge you to exercise your activist muscle. Demand that the AMA rescind its endorsement of Tom Price. If they won’t, consider resigning in protest. PNHP will be happy to put your AMA dues to much better use.

Dr. Carol Paris is president-elect of Physicians for a National Health Program.