EUROPEAN PAPERS ON THE NEW WELFARE

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Aging of Society and New Medical Technology: The Challenge for Health Insurers to Meet the Expectations of Consumers and Governments

Abstract
During the past decades, new medical technology has been cost-increasing rather than cost-reducing, unlike technological innovation in industry. New medical technology thus has importantly contributed to the surge in healthcare expenditure (HCE), which falls also on health insurers both social and private. At the same time, medical advances continue to result in increasing life expectancy and improved quality of life (Lichtenberg, 2001), creating pressure on health insurers to include them in their list of benefits. However, contributions in particular to social health insurance have not kept pace with the promised future benefits, causing a financing gap in most Western countries (Kotlikoff and Raffelhüschen, 1999). Read More