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Equality, Efficiency, and Market Fundamentals: The Dynamics of International Medical-Care Reform

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  • David M. Cutler

Abstract

Public opinion surveys uniformly show low support for medical-care systems in developed countries. The longstanding conflict between equal access to care and efficient service provision partly explains this dissatisfaction. But the trade-off is particularly acute in medical care, as new technologies developed over time have increased the cost of care and made the equity commitment even more expensive. Countries first dealt with rising costs by maintaining equal access and restricting total spending. Efficiency suffered, however. As a result, many countries are considering a move away from spending controls and toward incentive-based medical-care reform.

Suggested Citation

  • David M. Cutler, 2002. "Equality, Efficiency, and Market Fundamentals: The Dynamics of International Medical-Care Reform," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 40(3), pages 881-906, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:jeclit:v:40:y:2002:i:3:p:881-906
    Note: DOI: 10.1257/002205102760273814
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. David M. Cutler, 1994. "A Guide to Health Care Reform," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 8(3), pages 13-29, Summer.
    2. Joseph P. Newhouse, 1992. "Medical Care Costs: How Much Welfare Loss?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 6(3), pages 3-21, Summer.
    3. David M. Cutler & Sarah J. Reber, 1998. "Paying for Health Insurance: The Trade-Off between Competition and Adverse Selection," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 113(2), pages 433-466.
    4. David M. Cutler & Mark McClellan & Joseph P. Newhouse, 2000. "How Does Managed Care Do It?," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 31(3), pages 526-548, Autumn.
    5. McClellan, Mark & Cutler, David & Newhous, Joseph P., 2000. "How Does Managed Care Do It?," Scholarly Articles 2643884, Harvard University Department of Economics.
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