Dutch health reform

Hans Maarse with a post on the changes in the Dutch health care system in the Hastings Center blog. A few snippets:

The reform is intended to bring about a system of regulated competition in health care. The aim is to introduce competition while upholding fundamental social values, in particular solidarity in health care financing and universal access to health care. Another aim is to enhance consumer choice. Everyone has the right to switch insurance providers by the end of the year.

Is the health insurance reform a success? The answer depends on the perspective taken.

An interesting read with a longer paper on the Dutch reforms also by Hans Maarse here.

My take on what this means for the U.S. is that it shows that if you have a broad political agreement, then you can (inevitably) muddle through on the policy. Some things work better than others, but almost nothing works exactly as planned. There may well be some technical/policy lessons to be learned for the U.S. as far as how to incorporate private insurance into coverage expansions with a goal of increasing competition and choice, but what we most need is a political agreement about how to move ahead. When (if) we ever get that, we can work on the policy.

 

About Don Taylor
Professor of Public Policy at Duke University (with appointments in Business, Nursing, Community and Family Medicine, and the Duke Clinical Research Institute). I am one of the founding faculty of the Margolis Center for Health Policy, and currently serve as Chair of Duke's University Priorities Committee (UPC). My research focuses on improving care for persons who are dying, and I am co-PI of a CMMI award in Community Based Palliative Care. I teach both undergrads and grad students at Duke. On twitter @donaldhtaylorjr

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