American drug prices have only soared higher, even as innovation in the pharmaceutical industry continues to slacken. The effects of consolidation wreak havoc on the American healthcare system and on Americans’ well-being.
Compared to the discourse in the other party’s nomination process, the debate between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders over health-care reform may have seemed thoughtful and on point. Clinton argued that Sanders’s “Medicare for all” plan was too expensive to ever become law and was also a threat to the progress achieved by the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Sanders criticized Clinton for compromising the progressive goal of a single-payer system that would make health care a right.
A frenzy of hospital mergers could leave the typical American family spending 50 percent of its income on health care within ten years—and blaming the Democrats. The solution requires banning price discrimination by monopolistic hospitals.