We Don't Need Health Care Reform

Nov. 25, 2009
We need lifestyle reform, according to this Fortune article by Geoff Colvin. Want to keep costs down? Then arrange the economy so people work less (maybe that's what the bankers were doing when they crashed the economy?) According to Colvin, " The truth, ...

We need lifestyle reform, according to this Fortune article by Geoff Colvin. Want to keep costs down? Then arrange the economy so people work less (maybe that's what the bankers were doing when they crashed the economy?)

According to Colvin, " The truth, little known but well documented, is that death rates decline and healthy living habits improve in tough economic times." He cites down profits at Hillenbrand, the largest casket manufacturer in the US, as one piece of evidence (among many).

Jonathan Becher at the Manage By Walking Around blog also cites a 2003 National Bureau of Economic Research study that puts the correlation at about .5% death rate reduction per every 1% increase in unemployment.

Of course, we still need reform of the current health care system as it stands -- the increasing gap between flat real income and rising health care premiums (and resulting rise in other data points, such as healthcare-related bankruptcies) proves that point. But it's an interesting and frankly counterintuitive piece of data nonetheless.

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