How Monopolies Slowed the Vaccine Roll-Out, and Small Business Sped it Up

Published in healthcare, concentrated corporate power, monopoly, on Jan 27, 2021

Matt Stoller of the American Economic Liberties Project is out with another hard hitting newsletter. In this one he covers the shortcomings of our monopoly run healthcare system and includes a note I wrote to him about hospital beds. This builds off my most recent post about healthcare monopolies and hospital beds.

On the hospital bed monopoly in the USA:

As it turns out, yes, uncomfortable hospital beds reflect a market power issue. The dominant firm in the space, Hill-Rom, was sued in 1995, 2006, and 2015 on antitrust charges involving excluding competitors from the standard hospital bed market. In 2015, it was described as a “serial monopolist” with 70-90% market share. Hospital market purchasing is consolidated, and hospital staff have very little choice over what they can buy, whether it’s syringes or beds. Monopolies are why we can’t have nice things.