The Pacific Research Institute has released a new report today, the “2008 U.S. Index of Health Ownership.” From the news release:
National Think Tank Releases State Rankings on Health Ownership
Alabama Comes Out on Top, New York Finishes Last
San Francisco – Americans lack the basic freedom to make their own health care decisions according to the second edition of the U.S. Index of Health Ownership, an annual report by the Pacific Research Institute (PRI). The Index measures the degree to which individuals, be they patients, health professionals, entrepreneurs, or taxpayers, “own” the health care in their states.
“The lack of health ownership is a real problem,” said John R. Graham, director of Health Care Studies at PRI and author of the Index. “Almost half of the country’s health care spending is in the hands of the government, instead of patients themselves. The other half is governed by regulations inflicted upon doctors, health plans and patients.”
With political discussions more and more unquestioningly embracing the “right” to health care, PRI considers liberty and property rights, both as a matter of principle and as an economic consideration. The report also assesses the effect of medical tort (and therefore the need for malpractice reform) on people’s freedom to engage in health services.
An important contribution to the debate, not coincidently coming from the epicenter of government attacks against individual choice in health care, San Francisco.
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