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Political candidates seek to represent physicians’, patients’ interests
e-Reports, April 19, 2010
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Each physician candidate urges you to get politically involved, too
With the approaching May primary, current political debate has encouraged six Indiana physicians to run for political office – a number that has captured the attention of the AMA.

“It’s not surprising that more physicians are seeking public office,” noted AMPAC Chair Shedlon Gross, M.D. “While it is still early in the 2010 election cycle, Indiana has one of the highest numbers of physician candidates running for federal office in the nation.”

The following physicians chose to get off the sidelines and into government policy:

Larry Buschon, M.D.
Larry Bucshon, M.D., Evansville

Dr. Bucshon is concerned about the direction of the country and its growing debt. “With the debate on health care, among other issues, I thought the time was right to run. We need fresh representation,” he said.

A resident of Warrick County since 1999, Dr. Bucshon served in the U.S. Navy Reserve and is a former small business owner. The first-time candidate noted politics affects everyone, especially doctors, and everyone can participate.

“Physicians should be heavily involved in politics on every level,” he said. “Our participation is important in order to secure the future of medicine for our patients and the young people who want to go into medicine.”

Nasser Hanna, M.D.
Nasser Hanna, M.D., Fishers

Dr. Hanna contends his medical background provides the needed knowledge and experience to serve in Congress. He said he decided to run for office because government was not measuring up and current Congressional leadership was not demonstrating good stewardship.

“I had been increasingly thinking about running and the time seemed to be right,” explained Dr. Hanna. “We have serious problems and we need serious thinkers.”

He added that physicians have a lot to offer in public service positions and encouraged all doctors to become involved.

John McGoff, M.D.
John McGoff, M.D., Indianapolis

Dr. McGoff is no newcomer to campaigning. In 1996, he was elected Marion County coroner and served two terms. In 2008, he nearly unseated incumbent Congressman Dan Burton, winning over 45 percent of the vote.

“Like almost all Americans, I believe it’s time to clean house in Congress,” he said. “The health care reform legislation passed by Congress and signed into law by the president further interferes with the patient/doctor relationship. It also doesn't address the SGR formula used to determine Medicare and Tricare payments to docs. Right now doctors are preparing for a 21 percent pay cut. This will make it difficult for seniors and military families to find medical services.”

Dr. McGoff, is a colonel in the Air Force National Guard.

David Blank, D.O.
Tom Hayhurst, M.D.,
Fort Wayne

Having served 12 years as a city councilman, Dr. Hayhurst enjoys helping others. Though he retired from his medical office, he works in three public health clinics.

He said, “Here, we have a high level of unemployment and I’m concerned about that.”

In 2006, Dr. Hayhurst nearly won against Congressman Mark Souder; now he’s trying again.

“It is very natural for doctors to run for office because they have a strong link to the lives of other people. I would encourage them to not only support their candidates of choice but to run for office as well.”

David Blank, D.O.
  • Emergency physician

  • Republican Candidate for State Representative,District 99

  • www.voteblank.com
David Blank, D.O., Beech Grove

New to politics, Dr. Blank was motivated in part by his wife, Julia, one of the founders of the Indianapolis Tea Party movement. Concerned about fiscal responsibility, he decided to challenge an 18-year Democrat incumbent.

“Education reform is certainly something I care about,” said the father of four young boys. “I would like to see the government use its dollars more wisely, which will benefit all of us.”

As the partner of a small business that provides emergency medicine services to the St. Francis hospital system, Dr. Blank is concerned about reimbursement issues and creating a favorable atmosphere for small businesses.

Physician incumbent seeks another state term
An incumbent since 1994, Tim Brown, M.D., is seeking a ninth term in the Indiana House of Representatives. The Crawfordsville Republican serves as a ranking member on the Public Health Committee and the Statutory Committee on Ethics, and is a member on the Natural Resources Committee.

Read more about Dr. Brown on this Web site.

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