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AMA slams Trump for saying doctors inflate COVID death count for money

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  • The American Medical Association hit back on Friday after President Donald Trump suggested doctors are inflating COVID-19 death counts for money, as cases continue to climb across the country.
  • During a rally in Michigan, the president erroneously claimed doctors are improperly citing COVID as a cause of death in some cases for monetary gain.
  • “The suggestion that doctors—in the midst of a public health crisis—are overcounting COVID-19 patients or lying to line their pockets is a malicious, outrageous, and completely misguided charge,” the AMA said in a statement.
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The American Medical Association hit back on Friday after President Donald Trump falsely suggested doctors are inflating COVID-19 death counts for money, as cases continue to climb across the country.

During a Michigan rally on Friday, the president lamented the increase in coronavirus cases, blaming it on an increase in testing, a claim his own testing czar has disputed. He then said doctors are improperly citing COVID-19 as a cause of death in some cases for monetary gain.

“You know, our doctors get more money if someone dies from COVID. You know that, right?” Trump asked the crowd. He characterized US doctors on the frontlines of coronavirus as saying, “When in doubt, choose COVID,” for the cause of death.

 

The AMA, the country’s largest association of physicians, responded to the accusation in a strongly-worded statement that did not address the president by name. The statement said frontline healthcare workers have risked their lives to fight the virus “because duty called and because of the sacred oath they took.”

“The suggestion that doctors — in the midst of a public health crisis — are overcounting COVID-19 patients or lying to line their pockets is a malicious, outrageous, and completely misguided charge,” Susan Bailey, president of the AMA, said.

“Rather than attacking us and lobbing baseless charges at physicians, our leaders should be following the science and urging adherence to the public health steps we know work — wearing a mask, washing hands, and practicing physical distancing,” she added.

The statement also noted that coronavirus cases are currently at record-high numbers. According to The COVID Tracking Project, the US daily case number broke records again on Friday by surpassing 97,000 cases.

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