Critical: What We Can Do About the Health-Care Crisis

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Macmillan, Feb 19, 2008 - Health & Fitness - 226 pages
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A much-needed and hard-hitting plan, from one of the great Democratic minds of our time, to reform America’s broken health-care system.

Undoubtedly, the biggest domestic policy issue in the coming years will be America’s health-care system. Millions of Americans go without medical care because they can’t afford it, and many others are mired in debt because they can’t pay their medical bills. It’s hard to think of another public policy problem that has lingered unaddressed for so long. Why have we failed to solve a problem that is such a high priority for so many citizens?

Former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle believes the problem is rooted in the complexity of the health-care issue and the power of the interest groups—doctors, hospitals, insurers, drug companies, researchers, patient advocates—that have a direct stake in it. Rather than simply pointing out the major flaws and placing blame, Daschle offers key solutions and creates a blueprint for solving the crisis.

Daschle’s solution lies in the Federal Reserve Board, which has overseen the equally complicated financial system with great success. A Fed-like health board would offer a public framework within which a private health-care system can operate more effectively and efficiently—insulated from political pressure yet accountable to elected officials and the American people. Daschle argues that this independent board would create a single standard of care and exert tremendous influence on every other provider and payer, even those in the private sector.

After decades of failed incremental measures, the American health-care system remains fundamentally broken and requires a comprehensive fix. With his bold and forward-looking plan, Daschle points us to the solution.


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User Review  - iammbb - LibraryThing

It's difficult for me to be objective about this issue. It is not difficult for me to be pessimistic about this issue. I truly get the feeling that the people who realize just how complicated this ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - dvulcano - LibraryThing

Since Daschle is the newly appointed Secretary of DHHS, a reading of his recently published book is a must for any healthcare professional. Daschle gives a nice summary of failed efforts to date (you ... Read full review


Part Two The History of Health Reform
Part Five Prospects for Health Reform

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About the author (2008)

Tom Daschle is a former U.S. Senator and Senate majority leader from South Dakota. He is currently a special policy advisor at the law firm Alston & Bird LLP, a visiting professor at the Georgetown Public Policy Institute, and a Distinguished Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress.

Jeanne M. Lambrew is an associate professor at the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas. Dr. Lambrew is also a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress. Previously, she worked on health policy at the White House as the program associate director for health at the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and as the senior health analyst at the National Economic Council.

Scott S. Greenberger, a former staff reporter at The Boston Globe, is a writer and consultant at Ricchetti, Inc., in Washington, D.C.

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