Some Problems With Pro-Competition Reforms
Agich, George J.
Begley, Charles E.
Social Science and Medicine. 1985; 21(6): 623-630.
Pro-competition reforms in health care are seen by advocates as not only addressing allocation inefficiencies, but as also achieving equity of access to health care. While marketing pressures will force providers to reduce costs, subsidies will allow the poor to purchase an adequate standard of care. Agich and Begley dispute this view, claiming two major difficulties. They argue that, while universal access to a minimum level of health care is an attractive goal, there is no way to define what this level is and therefore no guarantee of achieving equal access through a pro-competition strategy. The authors also are critical of the part that physicians and other health care providers are expected to play in rationing health care, foreseeing a threat to their traditional roles as advocates of patient welfare. (KIE abstract)