Changing Health Care Policy U.S.A., 1982. Concord, MA, International Health Services Ltd., 1982. 100 pages, $10.00.
This brief health care policy summary examines the issue of spirali ng health care costs over the past decade; addresses recent federal legislative changes in health planning and financing as they have affected California, Florida, Michigan, and New York; and explores future health care changes in service delivery and cost containment.
Candid economic realities are presented and important answers are given to questions such as: "Who benefits from rising health care costs?" and "How are these costs passed directly or indirectly to the consuming public?"
Current legislative changes in Medicare/ Medicaid and health planning policies and their effects on the four key stales provide the data base for analyzing healthcarecostvariables. In each of these states, physician density, hospital costs per capita, availability of federal funds, and demand for medical services correlate with health care costs. The cost of health care is due to an interaction of cost-related variables rather than any specific isolated variable and this interaction differed considerably state-tostate.
The final section of this summary report examines the issue of a cost containment environment characterized by reduced availability of funds, prospective reimbursement, and the standardization of Medicare/ Medicaid rates.
International Health Services Ltd. has presented an overview of the economic, environmental, and political factors affecting the past, present and future of health care delivery. They also have compiled valuable background materials in the body of the report and in the appendices to make this a reading must for health care providers who, while aware of the history of health care delivery in this country, are concerned with the future.