HealthLawProf Blog

Editor: Katharine Van Tassel
Akron Univ. School of Law

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Friday, May 4, 2012

Shock! Higher Prices, Overpriced Technology and Obesity Responsible for Healthcare Costs

The Commonwealth Fund has made available an important new report, Explaining High Health Care Spending in the United States: An International Comparison of Supply, Utilization, Prices, and Quality, here. The authors compare the cost and quality of healthcare in 13 industialized countries. Contrary to arguments frequently made this report finds that higher costs in the US are not due to higher income, the size of the elderly population, or smoking rates in the US.  Rather the only positive correlations were, “higher prices and perhaps more readily accessible technology and greater obesity.” Unfortunately the same study confirmed prior research that “despite high costs, quality in the U.S. health care system is variable and not notably superior to the far less expensive systems in the other study countries.” [NPT]

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