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Remedy and Reaction: The Peculiar American Struggle Over Health Care Reform
Synopses & Reviews
In no other country has health care served as such a volatile flashpoint of ideological conflict. America has endured a century of rancorous debate on health insurance, and despite the passage of legislation in 2010, the battle is not yet over. This book is a history of how and why the United States became so stubbornly different in health care, presented by an expert with unsurpassed knowledge of the issues.
Tracing health-care reform from its beginnings to its current uncertain prospects, Paul Starr argues that the United States ensnared itself in a trap through policies that satisfied enough of the public and so enriched the health-care industry as to make the system difficult to change.
He reveals the inside story of the rise and fall of the Clinton health plan in the early 1990s—and of the Gingrich counterrevolution that followed. And he explains the curious tale of how Mitt Romneys reforms in Massachusetts became a model for Democrats and then follows both the passage of those reforms under Obama and the explosive reaction they elicited from conservatives. Writing concisely and with an even hand, the author offers exactly what is needed as the debate continues—a penetrating account of how health care became such treacherous terrain in American politics.
"In this remarkable history, Yale sociologist and Pulitzer Prize — winner Starr (The Social Transformation of American Medicine) says that America's contradictions (the opposing values of egalitarianism and self-reliance) are nowhere more evident than in the rancorous history of health care reform. Unlike citizens in other rich capitalist countries, Americans equate public responsibility for health care with a loss of freedom, while health care reformers and critics alike play on our distrust of Big Insurance and Big Government. There couldn't be a more astute insider to the politics of reform than Starr; some of his most riveting elements draw on his experience working on the Clinton administration's health care push, as well as his sharp critique of Obama administration reforms: 'Obama would go from a position that was good politics but bad policy during the election to a position that was good policy but bad politics when he was president....' Starr's history of America's battle over whether health care should be a right is an exacting look at politics and policies — and a challenge to Americans to overcome their fear and distrust in order to protect the sick and vulnerable. (Oct.)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
A leading expert explains how Americans trapped themselves in a costly and complicated health system—and came to fight so bitterly about changing it
This book offers a timely account of health reform struggles in developed democracies. The editors, leading experts in the field, have brought together a group of distinguished scholars to explore the ambitions and realities of health care regulation, financing, and delivery across countries. These wide-ranging essays cover policy debates and reforms in Canada, Germany, Holland, the United Kingdom, and the United States, as well as separate treatments of some of the most prominent issues confronting policy makers. These include primary care, hospital care, long-term care, pharmaceutical policy, and private health insurance. The authors are attentive throughout to the ways in which cross-national, comparative research may inform national policy debates not only under the Obama administration but across the world.
Why the United States has failed to establish a comprehensive high-quality child care program is the question at the center of this book. Edward Zigler has been intimately involved in this issue since the 1970s, and here he presents a firsthand history of the policy making and politics surrounding this important debate.
Good-quality child care supports cognitive, social, and emotional development, school readiness, and academic achievement. This book examines the history of child care policy since 1969, including the inside story of Americas one great attempt to create a comprehensive system of child care, its failure, and the lack of subsequent progress. Identifying specific issues that persist today, Zigler and his coauthors conclude with an agenda designed to lead us successfully toward quality care for Americas children.
About the Author
John E. Murray is professor of economics, University of Toledo. He lives in Toledo, OH.
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