Health Care


By and / 3.13.2018

In October 2017, Governor Jerry Brown of California signed a “drug price transparency bill,” requiring pharma and biotech companies to give advance notification of significant price increases and provide specific justifications. Brown hailed the bill as a big step toward holding down spending on health care. “Californians have a right to know why their medical […]

By and / 3.1.2018

Healthcare faces three major issues: access, cost, and productivity. Telemedicine — the use of technology to help treat patients remotely – can help address all three. Broadband allows many underserved rural and minority communities that previously had limited access to medical services to remotely access high-quality medical care. Telemedicine reduces the need for expensive real […]

By / 12.13.2016

Economists often apply the term “opportunity costs” to high and middle-income people, meaning that the time they spend on one task is time not available to perform other, potentially more valuable tasks. But social scientists rarely apply the concept to low-income people, acting as if their time is essentially worthless. Sort of like the spouse […]


By / 12.19.2017

It’s been a surreal political year, but PPI has much to celebrate this holiday season. Throughout 2017, we expanded our productive capacity and the scope of our political and media outreach significantly. For example, PPI organized 150 meetings with prominent elected officials; visited 10 state capitals and 10 foreign capitals, published an influential book and […]

By / 1.27.2017

“Have your cake and eat it.”  With these six aggressively monosyllabic words, the redoubtable Boris Johnson came clean, almost despite himself, about the contradictions of Brexit, and perhaps those of today’s right-of-center populism altogether.  In time, the phrase may be seen as the defining utterance of the post-truth era in trans-Atlantic politics. The Washington corollary […]

By / 12.11.2015

An unfortunate refrain among Democratic presidential hopefuls is that rapacious pharmaceutical and biotech companies are driving up the cost of essential medications, bankrupting the health-care system, and depriving sick Americans of treatment. Hillary Clinton has honed her message to a nice sound bite: Drug companies that charge excessively high prices “are making a fortune off […]


By / 6.1.2017

Innovation is the foundation of growth. As innovation spreads to the physical industries, the result is higher wages, lower costs, and a more dynamic economy, as we showed in our recent report, The Coming Productivity Boom. But innovation in physical industries  has proceeded slower than we might have wanted, In part, that’s because promising technologies […]

By / 5.29.2017

For the past several years, PPI has analyzed the key drivers of health care costs. This year, as the Senate considers repealing the ACA, it’s especially important to correctly attribute the causes of rising health care costs. Our main result is that rising labor compensation for health care workers accounted for 44% of the increase in personal […]

By / 9.30.2016

According to PPI estimates, rising labor costs accounted for almost $65 billion in added health care costs in 2015, or 47 percent of the total increase in personal health care spending (as reported by the latest projections from the actuaries at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid). By contrast, IMS reports that net spending on prescription drugs […]