Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Universal Healthcare That Extends To Devleping Nations

Kenneth Arrow is arguably the most respected economist in the US.  He wrote this article, along with a colleague from the World Bank, to describe the path to universal healthcare.  Importantly, healthcare does not exist in a vacuum; it requires an infrastructure to economically deliver services, especially in poor nations. Improved access to healthcare in poor nations is preventing premature death in many places and it is also a public good.  Healthy individuals are also more productive. 

It is encouraging to see Kenneth Arrow involved in extending universal healthcare in poor nations.  It may be somewhat easier to make progress in nations without access to healthcare than it is in the US.  Arrow's fame is partly the result of his mathematical description of a perfectly competitive market in a state of equilibrium.  He also wrote a paper which explained the differences between the healthcare market and the competitive market for traditional consumer goods.  One of the problems that we have had in the US is that many of our politicians cannot accept Arrow's distinction between consumer markets and dynamics of the healthcare system which is organized quite differently in different parts of the world.  Consequently, the US healthcare system restricts access to many citizens; it is also less efficient and more costly that many other systems. 

No comments:

Post a Comment