Health care technology in the United States

Sean R. Tunis, Hellen Gelband

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


The US health care system reflects the free market of the US economy-there is no fixed budget and no limit on expenditures in the loosely structured matrix of largely private-sector health industry components. Mainly because of the inaccessibility of adequate health care for a large segment of the population, and because the enormous cost of care threatens financial ruin for many more people, the first major reform of the system was debated in Congress for most of 1994, though, in the end, no leglislation was passed. One focus of the debate on spending has been the problem of excessive use of expensive medical technology and the need for some control, which, by and large, is lacking in the existing system. Health care technology assessment itself is a thriving industry in the United States, used by government, insurers, medical societies, hospitals, and other groups for their own purposes. At the national policy level, few opportunities for technology assessment to affect the health care industry exist, so most effort is directed at trying to affect medical practice at the level of the individual hospital and practitioner. The discernible effect of technology assessment has been minimal.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)335-396
Number of pages62
JournalHealth Policy
Issue number1-3
StatePublished - 1994
Externally publishedYes


  • Health care technology
  • Medical devices
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Technology assessment
  • United States

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


Dive into the research topics of 'Health care technology in the United States'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this