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November 13, 2013

The Toxic Politics of Health Care

Author Affiliations
  • 1Institute for Healthcare Improvement, Harvard, Newton, Massachusetts
JAMA. 2013;310(18):1921-1922. doi:10.1001/jama.2013.281965

It could be exciting. The ambitious nation that rallied to create the Marshall Plan, get to the moon first, and birth Medicare and Medicaid decides to move toward the health care it needs: universal, responsive, and affordable. But that task does not unite the nation; it rends it into political tatters. Health care reform could have been a moon shot, but instead it is a battlefield: red states against blue, north against south, coasts against the midland, and liberals, who trust in government, against conservatives, who don’t.

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