Howard Bauchner, M.D., editor-in-chief of the Journal of the American Medical Association, spoke to about 25 journalists and students at a recent AHCJ Chicago chapter event hosted by JAMA at its Chicago office.
“I don’t think we’ve settled the debate in the United States about whether health care is a fundamental right or a fundamental privilege,” Bauchner said in response to a question about doctors’ views on the Affordable Care Act. “And it’s been striking to me that the president has avoided that issue.”
Bauchner added: “That goes to the heart about why physicians are very divided about it.”
Bauchner talked about embargoes, the debate over open access to medical research and the online integration of the 10 medical journals in the JAMA Network.
He said he expects embargoes to be discussed at the May retreat of the JAMA editorial board. He’ll bring the board information on what other journals are doing, he said, and he’ll pose the question, “How does audio and video change any notion that embargoes should exist?” He said he’ll seek opinions from journalists, too.
Bauchner speculated: “We will continue to have embargoes. The exact, precise timing of it is a little less clear to me.”
During his discussion of embargoes, Bauchner wondered whether a certain blogger would get word of his comments.
“Who’s the embargo person who blogs all the time?” he asked.
Several voices in the audience chorused: “IVAN ORANSKY.”
The Chicago chapter thanks Jann Ingmire of the JAMA Network for her help organizing the event.