Holman W. Jenkins writes,

a University of Maryland study found that the more generous a patient’s insurance, the more likely he was to be taking a Cox-2 — and the less likely he was to need it. For the patients with the best coverage, in fact, there was basically zero correlation to need.

…what insurers are selling these days is not true insurance but a mechanism to launder medical consumption through a third-party payment mill to qualify for a tax benefit.

Jenkins argues that the misuse of Vioxx was due to the fact that insurance companies, rather than patients, are the primary decision-makers.

I like the “mechanism to launder” phrase. It would have been useful to incorporate in You Call This Health Insurance?

For Discussion. Could it be that third-party decision-makers fill a consumer need, i.e., that we really do not want to make these decisions ourselves?