National Health Policy: What Role for Government? (Hoover Inst Press Publication)

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9780817976514: National Health Policy: What Role for Government? (Hoover Inst Press Publication)

Much of the material included in this conference volume differs from what is typically found in similar publications dealing with health policy issues in that it exhibits willingness to re-examine and question the all-too-frequent assertion by many specialists that the transformation of the American health system from a private to a public enterprise is inevitable. It is commonly argued that the American health care system is imperfect: health levels of the population are not the highest in the world; access to health care services is incomplete, especially for the poor and the chronically ill; there are no complete health insurance plans against all medical and related contingencies; and some segments of the population lack any insurance coverage. Moreover, there is medical cost inflation; and despite an apparent unchecked trend to commit a growing share of the national pie to health care services, the system stills fails to eliminate various inequities in the distribution of services across different areas or population groups. Thus everyone knows, goes the argument, that it is the government which must intervene and shoulder a major responsibility for alleviating these problems. Indeed, if one looks at the developments in some other Western countries in recent decades, the inevitable solutions seems to be in the direction of establishing at the very least a national health insurance plan, if not a national health system modeled after the British or Canadian examples.

Yet many papers included in this volume express skepticism regarding both the diagnosis of the American health system as fundamentally ailing and the prescription of greater public intervention in the financing and delivery of medical services as the remedy and sure path to recovery.

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About the Author:

Dr. Ehrlich's research interests include general applications of economic theory to law and economics, crime and justice, human capital and health economics, advertising and information,uncertainty and insurance, social security, and economic growth and development. He is the author of 80 original and reprinted articles in major refereed journals and collections, including two books and a special journal issue, and his widely cited work – he is listed among the 100 most cited economists on several published surveys – has been supported by numerous grants from the National Science Foundation and other Federal agencies, including a major USAID grant to study economic development and the role of free enterprise. In 2006, Dr. Ehrlich was awarded the prestigious faculty development grant from the New York Office of Science, Technology, and Academic research (NYSTAR), which he is using to establish a “Signature center of Excellence on Human Capital, technology transfer, and Economic growth and Development”. He holds a Ph.D.degree from Columbia University .

Professor Ehrlich currently serves as Chairman of the Department of Economics in the College of Arts and Sciences and as Melvin H.Baker Professor of American Enterprise in the School of Management . He is also a Research Associate (currently a senior title) of the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), an Honorary Professor at the City University of Hong Kong, a Research Associate of the Institute of Policy Analysis of the University of Toronto , and a member of the prestigious Mont Pellerin Society.

His previous academic affiliations include appointments as a lecturer at the Tel-Aviv University , an Associate Professor at the University of Chicago , and a Senior Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research, where he was one of the founders of the Law and Economics Project. He has also been a Visiting Fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford, and a Visiting Professor at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. He has given numerous public lectures and seminars in Austria , Canada , China , Colombia , France , Hong Kong , Israel , Japan , Singapore , Switzerland , Taiwan , and Uruguay.

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ISAAC EHRLICH
Published by Hoover Institution Press (1982)
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