This volume examines one of the most important policy issues to be faced as policymakers address both current and future health care needs—the allocation of health care resources for an aging population. The first part looks at the role of the aged in society, what justice requires of the young toward the old and of the old toward the young, the source of rising health care costs, and the need to control medical spending.
The second part focuses on dramatic and controversial proposals by Daniel Callahan and others to control medical spending in the next century by rationing life-prolonging treatment according to age. Concluding chapters provide concrete proposals for a system that solves our immediate problems of cost and access while preparing for the extraordinary needs of an aging population.
This book explores proposed changes in the U. S. health-care system to meet unprecedented demand expected early in the next century when the "baby boom" generation reaches retirement age and eligibility for Medicare. A focal point is the possibility of withholding publicly-funded, life-prolonging medical care from the very old.
Chris Hackler is Director of the Division of Medical Humanities at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences.
"The book addresses an important aspect of health-care ethics and is especially timely as we head into constructing a new health-care system. A beautiful piece of work, competently done and put together. " — Dr. Erich H. Loewy, University of Illinois