neal dunn's hypocrisy
The Multimillionaire Medical Industry Executive
Rep. Neal Dunn puts his personal financial interests before the public interest in our district – most notably by voting for the RyanCare health bill that would end affordable health insurance for 63,000 men, women and children in District 2, according to Congressional Budget Office estimates. He doesn’t want you to know that he has grown wealthy by gaming taxpayer-financed health care programs like Medicare, Medicaid and Tricare to maximize his profits. And he really doesn’t want you to know that soaring medical bills from his businesses help drive up health insurance premiums.
Some highlights of Dunn’s profitable medical industry businesses:
Since moving to Panama City and beginning private practice in 1990, Congressman Dunn has created a group practice of over 100 urologists, which now owns its own testing and treatment businesses. Because of lax Congressional oversight, this group can steer its patients to these businesses, earning generous kickbacks, and padding Medicare and other bills that drive up your medical costs and insurance premiums.
- Dunn founded and grew the Bay County Urological Center, a group practice, which he parlayed into an even bigger group practice, Advanced Urology Institute – now over 100 urologists today in North Florida and beyond. This group practice dominates urology services in District 2, exercising monopoly power to demand and get higher payments from hospitals, insurers and working families.
- In 2008, Dunn arranged for his Bay County Urological Center to negotiate a very favorable no-bid lease of the Radiation Oncology Center (and its $5 million annual revenue stream) from Panama City’s Bay Medical Center. By one estimate, the annual profit to Dunn’s business would be $2 million after expenses. More important, it enables his group practice to steer patients to its own cancer treatment facility, an arrangement that typically results in increased, often unnecessary, usage – and lucrative kickbacks – all paid by private insurers, Tricare, Medicare and Medicaid and, ultimately, by working families like yours.
- The decision by the Bay Medical Center board of trustees to lease its profitable Radiation Oncology Center – giving away its $5 million revenue stream – raises ethical questions involving Congressman Dunn. At the same time the hospital trustees considered Dunn’s proposal, he was organizing a new local bank, Summit Bank. He appointed two hospital trustees and its CEO to the bank’s board of directors. Three past trustees also joined the board. Today, four of the eight Summit Bank directors are former Bay Medical Center trustees – conflicts of interest that approach unethical conduct.
- Adding insult to injury to District 2 residents, Dunn proclaims the virtues of competition, which he has rigged by his anticompetitive business practices. On his campaign website, he states, “We need a free market health care system that gives consumers more choice and does not come between a patient and their doctor.” Welcome to the “free market” of one choice of urologists in North Florida – Dunn’s urologists.
Dunn's Performance in Office
Congressman Dunn has failed to live up to minimal standards of performance as our representative in Washington, D.C. He has refused to meet with constituents likely to criticize him, and has failed to make independent, informed judgments as he decides the future wellbeing of North Florida’s working families by following dictates by Speaker Paul Ryan.
- Despite their importance as a means of listening to citizen concerns, Congressman Dunn has failed to hold or appear at town hall meetings or even meet with the people he is supposed to represent. In February, he apparently panicked at the prospect of meeting constituents in his Tallahassee office, left suddenly, and raced off in his SUV, running a red light as he sped away. It was recorded on video here.
- Congressman Dunn has shown no signs of independence as Speaker Paul Ryan dictates how to vote on important measures, most notably the RyanCare health plan that would deprive 63,000 people in District 2 of the affordable health insurance they have today. Also, his vote in 2017 for Ryan’s repeal of Dodd-Frank financial reforms will leave North Florida working families and enlisted military families defenseless from predatory lenders and swindlers.
- We can only hope that Congressman Dunn does not practice medicine the way he practices public policy. His defense of the RyanCare health plan ignores verifiable, authoritative evidence that it would cost 23 million Americans (and 63,000 in our Congressional District) their affordable health insurance, as the Congressional Budget Office reported. Instead, he employs – and evidently believes – bogus partisan studies.
- At the very least, Congressman Dunn shows a disturbing ingratitude to the taxpayers who funded his rise to multimillionaire. He attended medical school on a very generous U.S. Army scholarship that also paid him while an intern and resident, in return for serving the minimum required years as a U.S. Army physician. Were it not for these taxpayer-funded programs, he might never have become the multimillionaire he is today. Yet today he rails against government involvement in health care.