Tuesday, July 14, 2009

I will now only post about pets…

I have a couple posts over at AEI's blog comparing cost growth in veterinary care – about the closest thing we have to a free market in health care – to health care for humans (see here and here). It's gotten good play, including at Greg Mankiw, Arnold Kling, Megan McArgle, Tyler Cowen, Bryan Caplan, Matt Yglesias and Brad DeLong.

There's a little overinterpretation going on, which I should have hedged against with better warnings on data limitations – in particular, there's so little data on the size and composition of the pet population that working up a real "excess cost growth" number for Bowser & Co. is pretty tough. So all I've shown is dollar figures, which aren't optimal. The broader case, though, as the Consumer Reports quote illustrates, is that the same factors driving up health care for two-leggers – rising income and new technologies – are doing it for our furry friends as well.

In any case, given the good coverage I will now only blog on pet-related issues.

1 comment:

John Bailey said...

It will be interesting to see how long this increase will be sustained in the face of the current financial pressures on many household, creating