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Consumer Sovereignty Is Defined By Hurley

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You wake up one morning and feel a lump in your armpit. You’ve been noticing that you’re more tired than usual over the past couple months. You decide to seek out the services of your physician to address your concerns. You find your way to the doctor’s office and you have a conversation with your physician. He feels your lump and describes the several possibilities of what the lump may be caused by. He prescribes blood work and some other tests to determine the nature of your problem and to follow up with him in 3 weeks. Three weeks later you revisit your physician and he tells you that you have a serious form of cancer and that he recommends that you immediately begin chemotherapy. He provides you with some prescriptions for nausea and…show more content…
Well functioning markets require that both the “buyer” and the “seller” have adequate information to make decisions, leading to market equilibrium or enforcement of the market. When one party has an informational advantage, they can exploit the other leading to market failure potentially caused by supplier-induced demand. This can remove the independence of supply and demand. We know that the problem of asymmetric information exists in the Canadian healthcare system, but to what extent is it detrimental to consumer sovereignty? Do we routinely observe supplier-induced demand by physicians that impact the ability of healthcare consumers to make informed decisions or do we have enough policy and regulation in place that limits impact of asymmetric information, ensuring that health services are recommended based on evidence? Lastly, should policy be promoting increased consumer sovereignty by placing more onus on consumers to make appropriate healthcare decisions and if so, how? Some may argue that “consumers” or “patients” have limited sovereignty or autonomy to make their own decisions when it comes to their healthcare. This is often very true, especially in situations where patients are in situations of life or death, or otherwise do not have the capacity to make a decision. In these cases the patient has no say in the services they receive. In other situations there is an
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