What do we want? Reg­u­la­tion or a free mar­ket?

Modern Healthcare - - COMMENT -

Re­gard­ing the ar­ti­cle “Qual­ity suf­fers, costs rise as hos­pi­tal sys­tems con­sol­i­date” (April 17, p. 11), this is all very com­plex, but in the end, cir­cu­lar logic. We now want reg­u­la­tion of the free mar­ket to pro­tect con­sumers from the con­sol­i­da­tion of the provider in­fra­struc­ture. But the im­pe­tus for con­sol­i­da­tion was the forces of com­pe­ti­tion and the free mar­ket it­self. So what do we re­ally want: a free mar­ket, which this study in­di­cates is lead­ing to higher costs and lower qual­ity, or a reg­u­lated mar­ket, such as a “Medi­care for all” sin­gle payer?

Ted Al­mon Chair­man, Claflin Co. War­wick, R.I.

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