Canadian Health Insurance

HRD-92-20R: Published: Feb 20, 1992. Publicly Released: Feb 20, 1992.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO responded to a January 1992 briefing paper that criticized an earlier GAO report on Canadian health insurance claiming that GAO overstated administrative savings and understated the additional costs of adopting a Canadian-style health insurance system. GAO noted that: (1) estimates in its report and the briefing paper were not comparable because of the different methodologies used; (2) administrative savings under a Canadian-style system would reflect the adoption of universal access, global budgeting for hospitals, and uniform physician fees; (3) if savings from such features had been identified in the briefing paper, the difference between its estimate and the GAO estimate would have narrowed significantly; and (4) the briefing paper included several misstatements regarding the GAO report.

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