Welcome to AMSA's Health Policy and a Pint!

Health Policy and a Pint is an information source for members of the American Medical Student Association (AMSA) and anyone interested in health policy to discuss current topics in health policy over a glass of their favorite beverage in a fun and relaxing environment. We will be recommending articles monthly for your group to take to a bar, a park or anywhere you want to promote active and lively discussion. If you get fired up by what you read, we'll also give you the info to do something about it. So check back monthly, post your thoughts and raise a glass to your health!

Monday, September 8, 2008

SEPTEMBER Topic: Health Savings Accounts

In elections all over the country, candidates are raving about Health Savings Accounts. But what are Health Savings Accounts, and are they really the silver bullet for American health care reform?

Questions to Ponder

1) In what ways is competition good for health care? In what ways is it bad?
2) Do Americans overuse health care? Is this overuse supply-driven (by doctors and hospitals) or demand driven (by patients)? Can this overuse be controlled by Health Savings Accounts?
3) In what ways do Health Savings Accounts affect the rest of the insurance market? What is the reason for the insurance function, and how can insurance markets fail?
4) What information do patients need in order to be rational, efficient consumers of health care services? What tools are available to help patients become better informed? What are the information problems and uncertainty intrinsic to health care?

Background and Resources

The Promise and Pitfalls of Health Savings Accounts

Wall Street Journal - To Your Health

NYT Op-Ed - The Health of a Nation

NYT Editorial - The Lopsided Bush Health Plan

RAND Health Insurance Study

AMSA Health Savings Accounts Primer

NEJM - Health Savings Accounts: The Ownership Society in Healthcare

Health Affairs - Medical Savings Accounts: Lessons from Singapore

1 comment:

Anne O'Connor said...

In addition to the discussions you have over a pint with your classmates, this blog will serve as an open forum for AMSA-wide debate. Enjoy!