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« Patient » ou « personne malade » ?. Les nouvelles figures du consommateur de soins


  • Claude Le Pen


Contrary to the traditional view of the health care consumer as an economic agent whose sove-reignty is attenuated, we argue that he is far less ignorant and far less deprived of reason than it is supposed by the tutelary model of health economics. The reason lies in his enhanced level of information, but also in the process of chronicization of illness which leads to a fading of the traditional frontiers between the normal and the pathological. The new figure of a rational, informed and active health care consumer emerges thus in health economics, who will tend to exert his autonomy and his responsibility, what is now encouraged by the Law, and who will seek to enter into an institutional game, that has long kept him apart. And it is only because equity considerations limit his personal financial liability, that he will not turn into becoming a real and complete "sovereign consumer". Classification JEL : I10, I11, I18

Suggested Citation

  • Claude Le Pen, 2009. "« Patient » ou « personne malade » ?. Les nouvelles figures du consommateur de soins," Revue économique, Presses de Sciences-Po, vol. 60(2), pages 257-271.
  • Handle: RePEc:cai:recosp:reco_602_0257

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    JEL classification:

    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General
    • I11 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Analysis of Health Care Markets
    • I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health


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