Free Trade In Doctors!

Apr 16 2012 @ 11:01am

Hospital_Charges

Medical tourism could be the key to lowering the cost of care in America:

As the economist Dean Baker has argued, making it easier for foreign doctors who met standardized requirements to practice in the U.S. would hold down costs and improve service. In addition to exporting patients, we could import doctors. Politically speaking, of course, this all seems improbable, because the medical industry is a powerful lobby and uninterested in competition. But the reality is that, unless we find some other way to rein in health-care costs, the logic of free trade in medicine is going to become harder to resist.

I'm not sure how much of the US's fantastic inefficiency in the delivery of healthcare is driven by doctors' remuneration.

(Chart from the IFHP (pdf))