Abstract and Keywords
The late nineteenth century witnessed the beginning of a strong, downward trend in mortality in the United States. Economists and others have been identifying and measuring the factors that contributed to these gains in health and to the growth of the healthcare sector over the twentieth century. This chapter attempts to organize and enumerate their various contributions and to suggest directions for future research. Most work falls under one of several strands of research. Public health efforts, innovations in medical technology, and the rise of social insurance and health insurance all play important roles in explaining the decline in mortality, the improvement in health in the United States over the twentieth century, and the growth in the healthcare sector.
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