Saturday, December 31, 2011

Public Opinion on Healthcare Costs Reduction, pt.1

The rising costs of healthcare system appears to be a big issue not only in the US private insurance-dominated scheme, but also in countries where healthcare is mainly public and guaranteed to the vast majority of individuals (e.g. EU countries). The need for reducing those still growing expenses seems to meet agreement among policy makers, however the real solutions are either difficult to achieve, or do not meet acceptance among public.
The Harvard School of Public Health and the Alliance for Aging Research recently published the results from their Four-country Comparative Effectiveness Decision-making and Patient Survey, in which they address this problem, at least in terms of public perception of cost-reducing solutions limiting access to high-cost prescription drugs and medical procedures.
The telephone surveys were performed in four countries including USA, UK, Italy and Germany. They included both general questions regarding satisfaction from healthcare systems and governments general policies in those countries, as well as acceptance for specific regulations, which were actually implemented in some of these countries, however without the specific details including actual drug/procedure names and countries in which such regulations are functioning.
The results are interesting, however not really surprising.
As a foretaste a sample of data showing general state of comfort concerning their respective healthcare systems among US, UK, Italian and German citizens:

More insights from this report in upcoming posts...