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Explainer

Video: Health Care is Not a Functioning Market

In a free market, competition drives down prices for consumers, while increasing quality and service. But health care is not a functioning market. Learn why the health care system is broken — resulting in unaffordable care without better outcomes — and what can be done to fix it.

In a new video, Arnold Ventures explores a major driver of exorbitant health care prices: consolidation, which has been on the rise for decades. This video is the second in a series on high health care prices, and what they mean for consumers, employers, and taxpayers. 

Today, two-thirds of hospitals in the U.S. are part of a larger health system, almost 1 in 3 physicians now works in a hospital-owned practice, and many regions are dominated by a single system. These dominant systems use their market power to extract higher payments, increasing health care costs and leaving patients and families without access to affordable, high-quality care.

We can fix this broken market. Policymakers and regulators are increasingly examining consolidation and anticompetitive practices. Solutions to improve health care competition and directly limit excessive prices should be on the table.

For more on the price problem and what it means for health care affordability, watch the first video in the series here or below.

Video

Health Care Prices Are Out of Control

When people talk about rising health care costs, they're really talking about rising health care prices. In any industry, the cost is what it takes to make and deliver a product or service, and the price is what they charge. In health care, there's little competition, so prices are irrationally high and wildly inconsistent. Learn how the system is broken in this first video in our series on exorbitant health care prices.

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