These lectures review the research and experience on the subject of health care economy. The author also sets down a moderately rigorous statement of the economic concepts underlying the kind of competition that he regards as the most promising way to achieve a reasonable degree of equity and efficiency in health care.
The first lecture is on the public policy goals of health care financing and delivery and discusses efficiency in health care. The second presents an economic analysis of the systems for organizing and financing medical care systems in the United States. The third lecture is about ``managed competition'', and the fourth reviews American experience with efforts to convert from the traditional system to a competitive system.
The book is addressed primarily to economists, health policy makers and health services researchers. It explains how market forces may be managed in pursuit of equity and efficiency in health care. It addresses systematically many of the causes of market failure and proposes a strategy (``managed competition'') for overcoming them. It should be of interest to policy makers in any country interested in incentives for more efficient health care delivery. It should also be very useful supplemental reading for courses in health care economics.