The latest article on health insurance everybody is pointing to is David Leonhardt’s column on prostate cancer. It is yet another explanation of how the “fee for service” model that dominates the health care industry creates economic incentives that guarantee health care expenditures that permanently spiral upward. Imagine if programmers were paid by the number of lines of code they produce. Yes, programmers would do more programming, but they almost certainly wouldn’t produce better applications.
The thing to remember as the nation debates health care is that doomsday approaches regardless of what’s done in terms of expanding the availability of health insurance. Our core problem is rising costs, and no matter what any politician says, this is a problem that we must address at some point. The core question that we face is how to remake the economics of the health care industry. Wish I had a solution.