Age as a Criterion for Rationing Health Care
Levinsky, Norman G.
New England Journal of Medicine. 1990 Jun 21; 322(25): 1813-1816.
Suggestions for reducing health care costs in the United States by explicit rationing have included proposals to use age as a criterion for allocating resources in medical care. In this Sounding Board essay, Levinsky critically examines arguments for withholding costly, life-prolonging technologies from elderly patients. He questions the reasoning behind such proposals and whether substantial savings can be realized unless routine medical care is withheld from the elderly as well as high technology care. Levinsky argues strongly against using age as a rationing criterion as detrimental to society. (KIE abstract)
Age Factors; Aged; Allowing to Die; Biomedical Technologies; Costs and Benefits; Discrimination; Economics; Health; Health Care; Health Care Delivery; Justice; Life; Life Extension; Moral Policy; Patient Care; Patients; Policy Analysis; Prognosis; Prolongation of Life; Public Policy; Quality of Life; Resource Allocation; Risks and Benefits; Selection for Treatment; Technology; Values; Withholding Treatment;