HealthcarePapers 4(4) May 2004 : 51-60.doi:10.12927/hcpap..16854
Arguments about where private sector healthcare delivery fits within a publicly funded system should distinguish among types of private delivery. In Canada, most healthcare delivery is already private, albeit not-for-profit (e.g., hospitals) or small business (e.g., physicians, dentists). The expectation that corporations provide a return on investment to shareholders is more problematic if the dual loyalties that professionals have as agents of their patients conflict with the profit imperative. Consideration of where such firms can generate their profits, and the "production characteristics" of healthcare, suggests that certain sectors lack the contestability, measurability and complexity needed to make competitive markets function effectively. Neither is it likely that competition can co-exist with requirements for a single payer.
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