Konrad Obermann, Christian Thielscher
Health economics has become an established field of enquiry over the past 30 years and is now an important contributor to normative health policy, and decisions concerning the allocation of resources and the quality of health care provision. However, the economic theory that underpins health economics is largely built on the neoclassical school of economic thought at the expense of other heterodox approaches to economics. This book addresses this imbalance of influence and draws on a wider breadth of economic thinking in order to improve health care for everyone.
Written by two medics, who are also qualified economists, the book aims to introduce students to complex economic principles and analytical frameworks through a mixture of hypothetical thought experiments and real-world examples. The text is divided into six parts, each aimed at expanding the reader’s cognizance of core issues in health economics: health and economic thinking; health insurance; health economic evaluation; justice and health priority setting; health management; and macroeconomics and health.
Addressing concerns that are relevant to both the individual and to public health, this text offers broad, complementary discussions to the paradigms conventionally deployed in health economics and will be welcomed by both economists and medical practitioners alike.
Introduction: approaching health economics
Part I Health, health care, and health-care systems 1. Understanding “health” in health economics 2. From disease to care 3. Ethics, values and the idea of a good life 4. Medicine as a business: caring for patients and managing a business 5. Financing health care 6. The relation between macroeconomics and health 7. Comparing health systems
Part II Health economic theory 8. Approaching health care from an economic point of view 9. The standard in current economics: neoclassical economics 10. Markets, market failure, state intervention and state failure 11. Options to finance medical care 12. Evaluation methods in health economics 13. Health technology and health technology assessment 14. Paying for medical care: balancing appropriateness, quality, and cost
Part III From theory to practice: using medical economics to improve global health 15. Medical economics: an applied interdisciplinary science that looks at evidence, considers complexity and implements what works 16. Global health and social health protection 17. Towards rational financing for health care 18. Priority setting and essential health service packages 19. The Covid-19 outbreak and the role of medical economics in responding to global health threats Epilogue: moving beyond the commoditization of health and making better use of the "dismal science"
Konrad Obermann is Senior Staff Scientist at Mannheim Institute of Public Health, Heidelberg University. He is a medical doctor and economist with over 25 years experience in clinical care, research and strategic planning. His particular research interests are in international health economics, health system development and health care financing.
Christian Thielscher is Director of the Competence Centre for Medical Economics at FOM University, Essen, Germany. He is editor of the successful 2 volume textbook on health economics, Medizinokonomie (Springer, 2015).