Health Care Finance: Economic Incentives and Productivity Enhancement

Health Care Finance: Economic Incentives and Productivity Enhancement

Health Care Finance: Economic Incentives and Productivity Enhancement

Health Care Finance: Economic Incentives and Productivity Enhancement

Synopsis

This work is a comprehensive study of the status, problem areas, and probable direction of health care financing. It is meant to respond to text and instruction needs. Eastaugh's book is also sufficiently inclusive to constitute a source book for professionals in health care administration and benefits planning. The 22 chapters cover all of the issues that relate to the high costs of medical care. Eastaugh includes exhaustive references to current research and makes practical recommendations for improving the provision of care and the containment of costs.

Excerpt

Americans want incompatible results: unlimited access to the best care at affordable prices. Health care has priced itself into the public eye and has assumed an increasing proportion of the American economy. the antecedents of this book, my two texts Medical Economics and Health Finance and Financing Health Care, parallel the evolution of this field. in 1980 economic issues and talk of national health insurance or deregulation dominated the discussion. in 1987 financial issues and the corporate growth of for-profit multihospital systems seemed of paramount importance. in 1992 productivity and quality are paramount issues for managers and policy makers. in each of my previous books one major prediction failed to happen. If I had to second-guess one major prediction in this current volume, I would guess that by the late 1990s the Deming method for quality improvement (chapter 11) will be relegated to the dust bin of failed ideas; joining two other things that did not happen: the popularity of Japanese quality circles and Paul Elwood's concept of supermed corporations providing the majority of the nation's health care.

A single individual working within our health care system may feel that his or her contribution is infinitesimal, but it is infinitely important that each person make a real contribution. I hope that the reader will develop admiration (1) for what a manager can do to enhance productivity, market strategy, quality, and profitability, (2) for what a financial manager can do to manage capital structure, investment decisions, and financing decisions, (3) for what a policy maker can do to enhance access, promote managed care, and learn from technologyassessment studies, and (4) for what a payer can do to act as a prudent buyer, yet preserve the biomedical capacity of the nation and meet the rising demand for long-term care. We must respond to the challenges ahead to make sure that our health care systems, ranging from long-term care to acute hospital care, serve in the most effective and efficient way possible.

In preparing this book, I have intentionally cast a wide net to include managers . . .

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