Consumers Union Freaky Economics

  • by: |
  • 03/20/2006

Apparently Consumers Union thinks that we should pay higher, not lower, hospital and doctor bills to prop up failing hospitals and subsidize charity care. At least that’s the rationale for the so-called consumer group which publishes price and quality ratings stereos and cars and supports price controls on prescription drugs for opposing the trend towards publishing the prices of doctor and hospital services. See for examples. Bill Vaughn who publishes Consumer Reports, the ratings guides said that ” if enough patients choose less expensive hospitals, other facilities could have trouble caring for patients who cannot pay for services, which “would further break up the social safety net.” Or the more competitive hospitals would be able to care for more patients. Or perhaps the entire system would respond to consumer demand and begin to actuallly prevent disease before it starts rather than treat it after it happens using the newer medicines whose prices Consumer Union wants government to lower. In otherwords, Consumer Union wants government to limit the freedom of people to choose the best price for hospital and physician care and to drive down the price of new medicines artificially through price controls.


Center for Medicine in the Public Interest is a nonprofit, non-partisan organization promoting innovative solutions that advance medical progress, reduce health disparities, extend life and make health care more affordable, preventive and patient-centered. CMPI also provides the public, policymakers and the media a reliable source of independent scientific analysis on issues ranging from personalized medicine, food and drug safety, health care reform and comparative effectiveness.

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