In Consumer-Driven Health Care, Regina E. Herzlinger, a leading health care thought leader and a professor at the Harvard Business School, provides a thought-provoking look inside a new, powerful force transforming America’s dysfunctional health care industry. Consumer-Driven Health Care builds on her popular 1997 book Market-Driven Health Care: Who Wins, Who Loses in the Transformation of America’s Largest Service Industry.
In the first part of her new 900-page book, Dr. Herzlinger makes a convincing case about how and why health care is broken and why market-based solutions – which empower consumers – are best. She restates the case she made in Market-Driven Health Care for putting consumers directly in charge of their own decisions (picking insurance plans, making medical decisions).
Through transparency of information, a realignment of incentives, and new tools to support decision-making, the consumer-driven model gives individuals a clear stake in their own health care. While not unique to other parts of the US economy, the approach is a radical departure for the $1.7 trillion health care market. As Dr. Herzlinger makes clear in her energetic analysis, the absence of these proven market-based tools goes a long to explain how health care became our most inefficient, outdated, and error-prone industry.
The second part