The High Price of Health
A Patient's Guide to the Hazards of Medical Politics
Publisher: James Lormier, Toronto, Canada
Year Published: 1987
Resource Type: Book
Cx Number: CX3481
Abstract: The media are full of reports on the crisis in health care: underfunding, staff shortages, waiting lists, an erosion of medicare. The High Price of Health looks at medical politics in Canada and argues that doctors are a major cause of the problem. The medical establishment, it says, has a dominant role in determining how health care funds are spent. Consequently, many of those funds end up in doctors' pockets, and, in addition, irrational patterns of spending are imposed on the health care system. The bulk of the book is devoted to what might be characterized "turf wars" -- the various battles which doctors waged to get and keep control of the health care system, including bitter resistance to medicare and moves to ban extra-billing, campaigns against pilot projects to put doctors on salary, opposition to midwives and other potential competitors. The High Price of Health is short on analysis of the economic superstructure within which doctors operate, and the section on "The potential for reform" is vacuous. It does, however, provide good information on especially the recent background of medical politics in Canada.