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JAMA Forum

Gearing Up for the Health Care Debate

A new administration is coming to Washington, promising yet another health care reform. Although the debate over health policy will surely be more unpredictable with President-elect Trump than it has been with most other politicians, that does not mean it will be entirely novel. Indeed, the past half-century of health debate likely provides a good road map for what is coming.

In preparation for Trumpcare, therefore, here are a few economic lessons.

Trump promised more health care choices, lower costs, and universal coverage. Of course, he cannot deliver this package any more than a physician can restore perfect health to a chronically ill patient. Indeed, it will be far easier to make things worse than better.

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