Monday, July 2, 2012

Costs of Healthcare


The Cost Conundrum

What a Texas town can teach us about health care.

by June 1, 2009

Costlier care is often worse care. Photograph by Phillip Toledano.
Costlier care is often worse care. Photograph by Phillip Toledano.
It is spring in McAllen, Texas. The morning sun is warm. The streets are lined with palm trees and pickup trucks. McAllen is in Hidalgo County, which has the lowest household income in the country, but it’s a border town, and a thriving foreign-trade zone has kept the unemployment rate below ten per cent. McAllen calls itself the Square Dance Capital of the World. “Lonesome Dove” was set around here.
McAllen has another distinction, too: it is one of the most expensive health-care markets in the country. Only Miami—which has much higher labor and living costs—spends more per person on health care. In 2006, Medicare spent fifteen thousand dollars per enrollee here, almost twice the national average. The income per capita is twelve thousand dollars. In other words, Medicare spends three thousand dollars more per person here than the average person earns.


Read more http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2009/06/01/090601fa_fact_gawande#ixzz1zUN2Sp2P
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