Mutual Aid: A Factor in Health Coverage

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Marc Lacey has written an interesting article for The New York Times on Africa's D.I.Y. health insurance plans.

[Via Tyler Cowen.]

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  1. I wonder if, were clinics here allowed to set their own prices in such a fashion, those without healthcare would band together for such benefit or look for someone else to provide it?

  2. Also from NYT, a clear contrast of public vs. the above private solution regarding health care for the poor:

    “World’s poor are crippled by corruption, study finds”

    I know, to Reasonoids it’s like declaring with a headline that the sun sets in the west. What I find interesting is that the article doesn’t *clearly* state that the corrupt hospitals are state run. I would assume and infer that though, perhaps someone else can clarify this. It is never stated that the patients had already paid a fee. The author, by this obvious ommission, seems to be trying to avoid sullying the idea of state provided health care.

  3. I see, reading it again, the hospitals are implied to be “public services.”

    It’s too bad the article doesn’t go further and show that connection with corruption.

  4. I see the NYT has done away with the registration. When did that happen? I haven’t been away that long.

  5. >were clinics here allowed to set their own prices in such a fashion

    I’m not sure what you mean. Providers here do set their own rates.

  6. We could use some mutual aid along the Gulf Coast. Keep those donations coming.

  7. Clearly, Serafina, I don’t know what I mean either – five minutes research shows that they set their own rates and that there are small collectives bargaining for health care prices.

    I’m just trying to make sure nobody takes me seriously. 🙂

  8. I’m not sure what you mean. Providers here do set their own rates.

    Mmm, yes and no. A physician who sees purely private pay patients can, of course set his or her own rates. But once a physician is dealing with Medicare/Medicaid and of course, myriad insurance plans, then rates are often set or capped for medical procedures.

  9. I know, to Reasonoids it’s like declaring with a headline that the sun sets in the west. What I find interesting is that the article doesn’t *clearly* state that the corrupt hospitals are state run.

    Here’s from one reasonoid who will tell you: capitalism and free markets have their warts. They can be as corrupt as anything that any gov’t ever produced. However…..

    What a free market does, is keep the door open for somebody else to come out on the ball field and do a better job. In the long run, if the markets are left free and open, that usually happens.

    It may or may not happen as soon as we the masses would like. But once gov’t agencies are created, significant change usually becomes impossible.

    Private business is not pristine, good, or moral just because it’s private, and operating in a free market.

    Capitalism ain’t perfect. But I’ve yet to see a system that works as well on net balance.

  10. From the article: “But the funds tend to regulate themselves.”

    But, but, Ted Rall said that was impossible! Maybe we should send him the article and watch his head explode.

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