Rashi Fein, Economist Who Urged Medicare, Dies at 88 – NYTimes.com

Rashi Fein, an influential economist who strove to bring ethical and humanitarian perspectives to the nation’s health care system and helped lay the intellectual groundwork for Medicare in the 1960s, died on Monday in Boston. He was 88.

. . .

When Dr. Fein began working on health issues as a young aide in the administration of Harry S. Truman, health care accounted for about 3 percent of the American economy. By the time he weighed in as a respected elder in the field during the debate over President Obama’s health care proposals, the expenditures had risen to 18 percent, an amount roughly equal to the economy of France.

via Rashi Fein, Economist Who Urged Medicare, Dies at 88 – NYTimes.com.

Here’s another quotation from the article:

Dr. Fein regarded both Medicare and the Affordable Care Act as important steps toward the overriding goal of helping “the people who have the least,” Dr. Emanuel said. In his 1986 book, “Medical Care, Medical Costs: The Search for a Health Insurance Policy,” Dr. Fein wrote, “Decent people — and we are decent people — are offended by unnecessary pain and suffering; that is, by pain and suffering for which there is a treatment and for which some (who are affluent) are treated.”

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