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Article
December 21, 1994

Medicine's Dilemmas: Infinite Needs Versus Finite Resources

Author Affiliations

UCLA School of Public Health Los Angeles, Calif

 

by William L. Kissick, 185 pp, $25, ISBN 0-300-05964-7, paper, $12, ISBN 0-300-05964-7, New Haven, Conn, Yale University Press, 1994.

JAMA. 1994;272(23):1870-1871. doi:10.1001/jama.1994.03520230080047

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Abstract

Dr Kissick describes this book as a "personal statement on health policy." This means it is based largely on his personal experiences and observations with relatively less emphasis on formal documentation from the literature. I think Dr Kissick has earned the right to write this kind of book given his long and productive career as physician, scholar, and professor at the University of Pennsylvania in the schools of medicine and management. He was actively involved in drafting the 1960s Medicare legislation and has continued to play an active role in health policy and management.

The author is concerned that the United States spends 14% of its gross national product on medical care and still has 40 million people without health insurance coverage. He provides his views as to how we got into this situation and some prescriptions to remedy the problem. He describes how the United States has been in

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