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March 1996

Effects of Global Competition on Health Care Administration in Finland and the United States: What You Can Do to Save Your Practice

Author Affiliations

From LeBonheur Children's Medical Center, University of Tennessee, Memphis.

Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1996;122(3):241-250. doi:10.1001/archotol.1996.01890150019005

Global competition, a faltering Finnish economy, and deep recession are forcing difficult decisions on the health care administrators of this Nordic country known for its extensive social welfare safety net and socialized health care system. In the first part of this article the Finnish health care system and its problems, as well as possible solutions, are presented. Similarities to our own system are noted and discussed. In an interview, the director general for the Minister of Social Affairs and Health of Finland, Kimmo Leppo, expressed concern about future funding sources in his country for the same levels of social welfare and health care programs that presently exist. The Finns are considering managed competition among providers, increasing copayments, excess hospital beds, anticipated hospital closures in their country, block grants, and how to deal with rising physician unemployment. He was interested in the proposed US government health care plans, and especially the state of Tennessee's TennCare plan, a state plan that closely resembled the failed Clinton health care reform package. The second part of this article explores how global competition has brought the pressure of modern competitive economics into the US medical arena.

(Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1996;122:241-250)

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