Matt, thanks for you comment and the articles you mentioned. Yes, I think that a huge part of the healthcare problem is the cost factor.
Healthcare is essentially immune to competition. If you need to buy a car the market offers all kinds of choices you can understand. If you need a hernia operation you have no choices. You certainly can’t say to your doctor, “What’s my out-the-door price for this hernia surgery?” an expect (1) to get an answer and (2) have any ability to shop around with other providers.
Wouldn’t it be interesting if hospitals were required to provide an all-inclusive price list for common procedures or if providers were capped at no more that X times the Medicare listed payment for the service?