Rationing Is Not A Four-letter Word: Setting Limits On Healthcare by Philip M. Rosoff

Rationing Is Not A Four-letter Word: Setting Limits On Healthcare

byPhilip M. Rosoff

Hardcover | July 3, 2014

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Most people would agree that the healthcare system in the United States is a mess. Healthcare accounts for a larger percentage of gross domestic product in the United States than in any other industrialized nation, but health outcomes do not reflect this enormous investment. In this book, Philip Rosoff offers a provocative proposal for providing quality healthcare to all Americans and controlling the out-of-control costs that threaten the economy. He argues that rationing -- often associated in the public's mind with such negatives as unplugging ventilators, death panels, and socialized medicine -- is not a dirty word. A comprehensive, centralized, and fair system of rationing is the best way to distribute the benefits of modern medicine equitably while achieving significant cost savings.

Rosoff points out that certain forms of rationing already exist when resources are scarce and demand high: the organ transplant system, for example, and the distribution of drugs during a shortage. He argues that if we incorporate certain key features from these systems, healthcare rationing would be fair -- and acceptable politically. Rosoff considers such topics as fairness, decisions about which benefits should be subject to rationing, and whether to compensate those who are denied scarce resources. Finally, he offers a detailed discussion of what an effective and equitable healthcare rationing system would look like.

About The Author

Philip M. Rosoff, a practicing physician, is Professor of Pediatrics and Medicine at Duke University Medical Center, where he is also a member scholar of the Trent Center for Bioethics, Humanities, and History of Medicine, and Director of Clinical Ethics at Duke University Hospital.
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Details & Specs

Title:Rationing Is Not A Four-letter Word: Setting Limits On HealthcareFormat:HardcoverDimensions:336 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.56 inPublished:July 3, 2014Publisher:The MIT PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0262027496

ISBN - 13:9780262027496

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Rosoff deserves credit for taking a distinctive approach to the problem of health care rationing. He calls our attention to the fact that there are many non-monetary forms of rationing that are integral and widely accepted parts of our health care system. If we make more explicit the reasons why these forms of rationing fail to elicit the heated and hate-filled rhetoric other proposed forms of rationing now elicit, then we might be able to have a more civil conversation about health care rationing as well as a fairer approach to implementing it. This is a project worthy of serious consideration by all reasonable persons, even politicians.