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Total Cure: The Antidote to the Health Care Crisis Hardcover – October 31, 2008

ISBN-13: 978-0674032101 ISBN-10: 0674032101 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Harvard University Press; 1 edition (October 31, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0674032101
  • ISBN-13: 978-0674032101
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.8 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,682,329 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Hal Luft's book deserves and will surely command a wide audience. Concerned public officials as well as concerned citizens will want to consider his comprehensive and detailed approach to ensuring access to quality medical care while controlling costs.
--Rashi Fein, coauthor of The Health Care Mess: How We Got into It and What It Will Take to Get Out

This book has some marvelous and novel ideas about how to restructure our health care system.
--Ezekiel J. Emanuel, author of Healthcare, Guaranteed: A Simple, Secure Solution for America

An innovative, stimulating, well-written prescription for health care reform.
--Victor R. Fuchs, author of Who Shall Live? Health, Economics, and Social Choice

In America, we pay more than any other country does for health care that has inconsistent quality, leaves millions uninsured, and wastes billions of dollars on unnecessary care and administration. In Total Cure, Hal Luft recognizes that changing the payment system must be the foundation for any real health reform.
--Peter V. Lee, Executive Director, National Health Policy, Pacific Business Group on Health

Luft has written a sober, thoughtful volume...It may also prove very influential.
--David Gratzer (Forbes 2008-12-08)

Economist Harold Luft presents a thought-provoking and original proposal in Total Cure...Now is the time to evaluate SecureChoice and other health care proposals. Swift action is crucial if policymakers are to take advantage of this defining moment to enact health care reforms.
--Marian E. Gornick (New England Journal of Medicine 2009-01-29)

Of the numerous discussions of health care reform, many are longer on diagnosis than on prescription. Total Cure: The Antidote to the Health Care Crisis is a notable exception to that tendency. After presenting a brief overview of the state of U.S. health care, it turns quickly to developing an innovative reform proposal, and it does so in considerably greater depth than most similar books...SecureChoice is an ingenious, carefully constructed proposal...Some readers not versed in health policy may find Total Cure: The Antidote to the Health Care Crisis challenging. It rewards the effort, however, by providing both an important new health care reform option and an illuminating tutorial on the issues at stake.
--Samuel Y. Sessions (Journal of the American Medical Association 2009-02-25)

Total Cure in whole or in part should definitely be included in the syllabus of a course that addresses what we might do to reform the U.S. health care system. And for those who want to be challenged to think about how they would restructure our health care system, Total Cure is a great read--it makes you think hard.
--Katherine Swartz (Inquiry 2009-05-01)

Are you sitting down? I have in hand a 318-page health care reform plan that could actually work. Really. Harold Luft's Total Cure is a calm, fearless leap across the abyss of health policy cynicism and the greatest of improbabilities: a comprehensive, detailed, and practical CTRL-ALT-DEL for the U.S. health care system...Luft's Total Cure is just what the policy doctors on Capitol Hill will need: a wise, postpartisan, durable shop manual for how to make health reform actually happen in our time.
--J. D. Kleinke (Health Affairs 2009-03-01)

Brilliant and badly underappreciated...Luft seems to recognize that advances in medical technology make the traditional approach to private health insurance less viable. Yet he also sees the value in promoting constructive competition. Part of the appeal of Luft's approach is that it is very open-ended: While [Universal Coverage Pool] coverage for big-ticket costs is mandatory, wraparound coverage is optional. His plan could be financed through something like our current system of tax incentives for employers, or we could finance it through taxes. And though fairly complex in its details, the basic outlines are simple and attractive: With the UCP in place, no one will ever go bankrupt due to illness; private insurers and providers will compete on the basic of cost and quality; and the health system will get better and cheaper over time.
--Reihan Salam (Forbes.com 2009-08-31)

About the Author

Harold S. Luft is Director of the Palo Alto Medical Foundation Research Institute, and Caldwell B. Esselstyn Professor of Health Policy and Health Economics, Emeritus, University of California, San Francisco.


More About the Author

Harold S. Luft, PhD, is Director of the Palo Alto Medical Foundation Research Institute and Caldwell B. Esselstyn Professor Emeritus of Health Policy and Health Economics and former Director of the Philip R. Lee Institute for Health Policy Studies at the University of California San Francisco. He received his degrees in economics from Harvard University. His research has covered HMOs, hospital competition, volume, quality and outcomes of hospital care, risk assessment and risk adjustment, and health care reform. An elected member of the Institute of Medicine, he served on its Council, that of the Agency for Health Care Policy and Research, and the Board of AcademyHealth. He was co-editor of the journal Health Services Research. Author or editor of five books and over 200 articles in scientific journals, his Total Cure: The Antidote to the Health Care Crisis, was published by Harvard University Press in October 2008.

"I've spent my adult life trying to understand how the health care system works--and why it doesn't work as well as it could. Over the last four years I developed a proposal that is markedly different from everything else under discussion. I begin with the health care system we have and our American values, Constitution, and politics. The proposal uses incentives and builds on choice; it forces no one to be a loser.

To transform our current dysfunctional system, I describe more appropriate roles for both market incentives and government. This comprehensive proposal enhances coverage and quality and simultaneously reduces cost escalation."

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Arlyss A. Rothman on October 30, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Not for the basic consumer public - it is complex - as is the problem and solutions. This book clearly moves the dabate of health care coverage into a new realm. Not just tinkering around the edges - but a clearer view of how to move health care coverage and quality into the 20th century - where it has not been.
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0 of 5 people found the following review helpful By ROROTOKO on July 29, 2009
Format: Hardcover
"Total Cure" is on the ROROTOKO list of cutting-edge intellectual nonfiction. Professor Luft's book interview ran here as a cover feature on January 6, 2009.
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1 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Carlos A. Rivas on February 12, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
You don't know health care policy reform until you know Luft!

ps - Thanks Beth!
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