How the U.S. Has Kept the Productivity Playing Field Tilted to Its Advantage: Austan Goolsbee Channels John van Reenen
Impeach George W. Bush Now

Today's Health Care Ration-by-Hassle Moment: Lamorinda Pediatrics

In Lamorinda Pedriatics, 930 Dewing Ave., Lafayette, CA, 9:00 AM for the second dose of a vaccination:

"I'm sorry, sir, we can't give vaccinations now. We only give vaccinations from 9:30-11:00."

"But we're here now..."

"But we can't give vaccinations now. You will have to wait until 9:30."

"But why can't you give vaccinations until 9:30?"

"It is our policy."

"So you could give the vaccination now, but won't."

"It is our policy that we cannot give vaccinations until 9:30."

"Could we make an appointment to get the vaccination done at some more convenient time for us?"

"I'm sorry, sir, we can do vaccinations on an appointment basis. We can do vaccinations on a walk-in basis only, from 9:30-11:00."

"Do you realize that your policy inconviences two-earner families?"

"I'm sorry you feel that way sir."

"That limiting vaccination hours to 9:30-11:00 makes it a significant hassle for some two-earner families to get here then?"

"I'm sorry you feel that way sir."

For us, it isn't a significant hassle: professors can rearrange their schedules to make the window (if given advance warning that that is the window). For others, it is. And vaccination rates would be lower than they would otherwise have been.

A well-designed health care-financing system would dock providers whose patients failed to get all their vaccinations. If we had a well-designed health care-financing system, bureaucrats would be chasing us down the street with syringes full of vaccines, rather than rationing-by-hassle.