[ExI] Medical Costs

Stathis Papaioannou stathisp at gmail.com
Tue Feb 19 12:02:40 UTC 2008

On 19/02/2008, Lee Corbin <lcorbin at rawbw.com> wrote:

> Later on, for all things it will be only the *government* that gets
> the bill, and the bureaucrats will find that the easiest path is just
> to raise taxes.  Luckily, less than half of the voting population
> pays 95 percent of the taxes, and so the electorate won't have
> any problem with higher taxes.

That doesn't seem to be the case in my experience of Australian public
hospitals. The health bureaucrats fight fiercely to give hospitals as
little money as possible and to get maximum value out of every dollar.
If a hospital underperforms or overspends, management is liable to be
sacked. The idea is to ensure not only that the finite health budget
is spent equitably, but also efficiently.

In health, at least, it seems that the free market is *less* efficient
than government. The US has the highest ratio of private to public
health spending in the developed world, but total per capita health
spending is about 50% more than in the other countries, while health
outcomes are by most measures slightly worse.

Stathis Papaioannou

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