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March 4, 1968

Nobody Can Do It for Us!

JAMA. 1968;203(10):881. doi:10.1001/jama.1968.03140100063015

Your future, as an individual physician, depends on the future of organized medicine. If controls, restrictions, quotas, schedules, and the like are imposed on our profession by persons outside of it who are empowered by the public to guide the destiny of medical care, then you will lose your freedom to practice as you see fit, to prescribe the drugs you think best, and to deliver medical care to each patient in whatever way is most satisfactory to you and to him.

You cannot remain free if your profession is shackled.

At the same time, however, the future of organized medicine—spokesman and witness for the profession— depends on your attitudes and activities, because organized medicine, the American Medical Association, is nothing more, and ultimately can be nothing more than the total of its members.

When the AMA states a policy, an opinion or a goal, the pronouncement has no validity