Saving your own skin — literally

Musing on markets and health care, and what happens when literally it is your own skin at risk.

The man had good insurance, and he and his family used it freely to provide him with as much comfort and care as possible. I can’t imagine they’d have acted differently were they paying out of pocket. It may sound macabre, even perverse, to link a man losing his skin to the policy-inflected term “skin in the game,” but I tell the story because people who use the term are willfully ignorant of what it actually means. Patients don’t act according to market models when the “skin in the game” is, well, their own skin.

 

Post by Jonathan Rees

Clinical academic and skin watcher at the University of Edinburgh

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