This article defies the traditional notion that cost inflation in healthcare could hardly be curbed without the significant revision of economic incentive scheme, but demonstrates the possibility of containing cost inflation with concerted administrative actions in the Chinese context. It examines the case of Fujian Province that embarked on a health bureaucracy‐led policy reform without an alteration of economic levers but mainly using administrative tools to combat cost escalation. Through clearly defined, well designed, targeted and concerted administrative measures, effective cost containment is attainable in China's healthcare sector, at least in the short run. If combined well with the powerful economic instruments, administrative tools would be able to augment their effects in cost containment, provided with the government's possession of hospital ownership. At the heart of Fujian's case are the reassertion of the government stewardship, the reconstruction of the collapsed accountability mechanisms, the reconfiguration of policy instruments, and the revision of administrative incentives, rather than the decreased costs per se. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
CitationHe, A. J. (2011). Combating healthcare cost inflation with concerted administrative actions in a Chinese province. Public Administration and Development, 31(3), 214-228. doi: 10.1002/pad.602
- Policy instruments
- Administrative action
- Cost inflation
- Health policy