The "Rationing" of Medical Care
Fuchs, Victor R.
New England Journal of Medicine. 1984 Dec 13; 311(24): 1572-1573.
Fuchs maintains that health care in the United States has always been rationed, and that what is changing is who does the rationing and who is affected by it. Health insurance has been a major factor in the rise of health expenditures by freeing patients and physicians from the need to weigh the benefits of treatment against costs. Doctors are now being asked to include economic factors in their decision making, and although society will benefit from a reduction in health care costs, individual patients may be harmed. Fuchs warns that this situation could damage the physician patient relationship, and recommends that allocation decisions be made by health planners and administrators. (KIE abstract)
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