Public Health Versus Health Care Financing

One frustrating aspect of the American health care debate is that policy arguments center almost entirely on ways to change the health care financing system, when all the evidence suggests that the provision of health care isn't actually a very effective way of improving health outcomes. Which isn't to say that health care finance isn't an important issue; it's hugely important to people's finances and somewhat important to their actual health. It would, however, make a ton of sense to find time to focus more attention on more effective sorts of public health measures than helping sick people go to the doctor.

Mark Kleiman has more on this and here's Phillip Longman's classic article on the subject.