Monday, August 17, 2009

What If We Don't Spend Enough on Health Care?

The WSJ has an informative opinion piece on health care, We Don't Spend Enough on Health Care, that contains the following:

The U.S. health-care economy should be viewed not as a burden but as an engine of growth. Medical and orthopedic equipment exports increased by 65.1% from 2004 through 2008. Pharmaceutical exports were up 74.6%. The unprecedented advances expected to come out of American stem cell, nanotechnology and human genome research—which other countries' constricted health sectors cannot support—will send these already impressive figures skyward.

It also quotes two prominent economists as saying:

"Viewed from every angle, our results support the proposition that both historical and future increases in the health spending share are desirable. . . . [W]e believe it likely that maximizing social welfare in the United States will require the development of institutions that are consistent with spending 30 percent or more of GDP on health by the middle of the century."

It's time to cast off the depression. Most people trust doctors more than financiers-- for good reason. Let's make the most of this knowledge-based "industry" - for our own health benefits, for the good of mankind in general, for the good of science and also for balance of trade reasons. We've suffered the depradations of a finance-based economy for far too long. It's time for real change we can believe in.

Copyright (C) Long Lake LLC 2009

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