Creating Effective Health Care Markets


Disagreement about the role of private markets lies at the root of many of our fiercest health care controversies. Given this fundamental divide, Commonwealth Fund President David Blumenthal, M.D., says it’s worth considering the conditions underlying the effective functioning of market economies, and what changes would be required to establish these conditions in health care.

In his new post on To the Point, Blumenthal points to three interventions for advocates of market solutions to consider:

  • Develop better information on prices and quality
  • Reduce consolidation in health care markets.
  • Focus on markets for “shoppable” health care services

“It is time for a frank, open, and nonideological discussion of the problems markets can address in health care and how we can create conditions that will enable markets to function as intended,” Blumenthal says.

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