On Paying the Fiddler to Change the Tune: Further Evidence from Ontario regarding the Impact of Universal Health Insurance on the Organization and Patterns of Medical Practice

This paper compares the findings from a 1973 community household interview survey conducted in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, with the findings from a similar study conducted in 1968 in the same city by a research team from the World Health Organization. Sault Ste. Marie is the site of the first Canadian consumer-sponsored prepaid group practice. Opposition by the private, solo practice sector of his community to this new modality of medical practice was considerable. Since 1969, with the introduction of universal health insurance in Ontario, the cost and benefit differences between solo and group practice medical are have been eliminated. By comparing the findings from the 1973 study with similar data from the 1968 WHO survey, observations can be made about the impact of universal health insurance on the organization and patterns of medical practice. Implications for the United States are important in view of the recent passage of the Health Maintenance Organization Act of 1973 and the expected enactment of some form of national health insurance.

Author(s): Gordon H. DeFriese

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Volume 53, Issue 2 (pages 117–148)
Published in 1975