Empowering Health Care Consumers Through Tax Reform

Front Cover
Grace-Marie Arnett
University of Michigan Press, 1999 - Social Science - 263 pages
For decades, policymakers at all levels of government have struggled to meet citizens' demands to contain the costs of health care, expand access to coverage and services, and maintain quality. Legislators' efforts to fix the current system have produced many counter-productive responses. Consumers have little freedom and few choices in purchasing health care. Empowering Health Care Consumers through Tax Reform offers a solution to this problem by proposing a system that provides a dynamic and competitive marketplace in which consumers make their own health care decisions. This book examines the option created by the intersection of health policy and tax reform.
Health policy analysts, economists, employer group and union representatives, physicians, and political leaders examine the crucial link between two major domestic policy issues to explore a revolutionary idea: that health-care costs can be contained and access to care vastly expanded by joining health care reform with tax reform. The contributors describe the distortions in the health care system caused by our current tax policy and paint their vision of a vibrant and responsive free-market system.
This vision of tax reform coupled with health reform is offered as a win-win scenario for consumers, the medical profession, policymakers, and the future U.S. health care system.
"This book shows how tax reform can lead to more appropriate and more affordable health insurance. It is worth careful reading by our policy makers and by anyone concerned with health care in America." --Martin Feldstein, Professor of Economics, Harvard University and Former Chairman, President's Council of Economic Advisors
Grace-Marie Arnett is president of the Galen Institute, a public policy research organization based in Alexandria, Virginia, that focuses on health and tax policy.
For decades, policymakers at all levels of government have struggled to meet citizens' demands to contain the costs of health care, expand access to coverage and services, and maintain quality. Legislators' efforts to fix the current system have produced many counter-productive responses. Consumers have little freedom and few choices in purchasing health care. Empowering Health Care Consumers through Tax Reform offers a solution to this problem by proposing a system that provides a dynamic and competitive marketplace in which consumers make their own health care decisions. This book examines the option created by the intersection of health policy and tax reform.
Health policy analysts, economists, employer group and union representatives, physicians, and political leaders examine the crucial link between two major domestic policy issues to explore a revolutionary idea: that health-care costs can be contained and access to care vastly expanded by joining health care reform with tax reform. The contributors describe the distortions in the health care system caused by our current tax policy and paint their vision of a vibrant and responsive free-market system.
This vision of tax reform coupled with health reform is offered as a win-win scenario for consumers, the medical profession, policymakers, and the future U.S. health care system.
"This book shows how tax reform can lead to more appropriate and more affordable health insurance. It is worth careful reading by our policy makers and by anyone concerned with health care in America." --Martin Feldstein, Professor of Economics, Harvard University and Former Chairman, President's Council of Economic Advisors
Grace-Marie Arnett is president of the Galen Institute, a public policy research organization based in Alexandria, Virginia, that focuses on health and tax policy.
 

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Contents

The Tax Treatment of Health Insurance Early History and Evidence 19401970
1
Whats Wrong with the Present System
27
High Anxiety Working Families Need MarketBased Health Care Reform
35
An Efficient and Equitable Approach to Health Reform
55
A Better Subsidy for Health Insurance?
71
Improving the System for Delivering Subsidies Cap or Scrap the Exclusion?
93
Toward a Universal Marketplace for Health Care
109
Health Care Reform Why Not Try Real Insurance?
119
Promoting a ConsumerDriven Health Care System
173
The Role of a Universal Health Credit in Welfare and Tax Reform
183
The Workers Right to Choose
191
Healing the PhysicianPatient Relationship
195
About the Authors
201
A Vision for ConsumerDriven Health Care Reform
211
Tax Reform The Heart of Health Care Reform
223
Petition on Health Policy Reform
229

Restructuring the Current Health Insurance Tax Subsidy to Cover the Uninsured
131
Medical Savings Accounts An Idea Whose Time Has Come
145

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