Comments upon an essay by Keith Leffler in the [Wall Street Journal] entitled "Doctors Fees and Health Costs." Leffler argued that "nearly all facts about the market for physicians suggest a market closely regulated by the classic forces of economics" and that past government interference in the medical marketplace has been responsible for high and rising medical costs. Leffler's suggestion that the supply of physicians merely responds to demand, however, overlooks federal subsidies for medical education. He also does not consider the role of health insurance, which in the hospital sector appears to have considerably stilled the classic forces of economics.
This report is part of the RAND Corporation Paper series. The paper was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1948 to 2003 that captured speeches, memorials, and derivative research, usually prepared on authors' own time and meant to be the scholarly or scientific contribution of individual authors to their professional fields. Papers were less formal than reports and did not require rigorous peer review.
This document and trademark(s) contained herein are protected by law. This representation of RAND intellectual property is provided for noncommercial use only. Unauthorized posting of this publication online is prohibited; linking directly to this product page is encouraged. Permission is required from RAND to reproduce, or reuse in another form, any of its research documents for commercial purposes. For information on reprint and reuse permissions, please visit www.rand.org/pubs/permissions.
The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.