Today’s Opinions: Ever-Rising Spending And A Role For Government

The Perennial Quest To Lower Health Care Spending The New York Times
The first major conference on health policy I ever attended, organized by The National Journal in Washington sometime in the late 1970s, focused on the rising cost of health care, which then absorbed close to 8 percent of gross domestic product and was threatening the unimaginable: to claim 10 percent or more of G.D.P. (Uwe Reinhardt, 9/24).

Lower Costs? Forget It. Chicago Tribune
You can’t expand coverage by 32 million Americans and figure that will hold costs down. The Democrats sold health care to Americans with a lot of fuzzy accounting and shaky assertions about how relatively inexpensive all this would be (9/23).

Competition On Access: A Role For Government In Health Care Markets Kaiser Health News
One theory for why health care markets have evolved to include mixtures of firms with different ownership, advanced by Nobel-laureate economist Kenneth Arrow, is that medical care (like education) is a personal good for which quality is often hard to measure and judge (Austin Frakt and Rexford Santerre, 9/24).

Stop Your Balking The Philadelphia Inquirer
Republican leaders are still talking about writing an epitaph for the sweeping reform of health care in America. That takes a lot of gall, given all the positive reviews coming in this week for the first major consumer benefits provided under the federal overhaul (9/24).

Insurers Still Hold The Cards On Care Kansas City Star
Seems like the insurance companies still call the shots. As some provisions of the federal health care plan took effect Thursday, insurers were cherry-picking the regulations (Mike Hendricks, 9/23).

Political Hucksterism: Will It Trump Health Coverage? The Seattle Post-Intelligencer
A Paris Hilton fender-bender gets greater publicity than a new patient’s bill of rights for America, or news that insurance companies can no longer deny health coverage to kids with pre-existing conditions (Joel Connelly, 9/23).

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