A Comparison of Hospital Capacities between Single-Payer and Multi-Payer Healthcare Systems among OECD Nations
Bengali, Shawn Minoo
The healthcare systems of OECD nations are very diverse and complex. With the COVID-19 pandemic testing these systems to a breaking point not seen in generations, some nations performed better than others in handling the spike in hospitalizations that occurred throughout the world. In light of the ongoing health care debate in the United States among policymakers who support incremental changes to the existing multi-payer healthcare system and policymakers who support the nation transitioning to a single-payer system, this begs the question of whether there are statistically significant differences in the amount of hospital capacity between the two systems among OECD nations that are similar in economic and governmental structure. Using panel data for OECD countries in the time span between 1970 and 2018, I find a statistically significant negative relationship between nations with single-payer systems and the amount of hospital beds per 100,000 individuals that they had. As policymakers debate whether the U.S. should transition from a multi-payer system to a single-payer system, this may be an important estimated relationship to consider.
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