Although the nation failed during the past decade to enact large-scale,structural change in government health policy, it has seen health care in the private sector remodeled dramatically during the same period. In this article I argue that a new round of equally significant changes is quite possible,this time at the hands of the national government. More specifically, I argue that for a variety of reasons, both enduring and more recently born, support for the private sector and the market in health care is relatively weak; that given likely trends in costs, demographics, and inequalities, it is likely to get even weaker; and that in the potential coming crisis of the health care system, there will be a real opportunity for seizing the agenda and winning policy battles on the part of would-be reformers pushing large-scale, public sector–oriented changes that go well beyond the recent reform efforts directed at managed care and HMOs.

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