Meanwhile, the insurance and pharmaceutical industries have become far more powerful over time. For example, the AMA contributed almost $400,000 to political candidates during the 2018 elections. Those contributions, however, are dwarfed by the many millions of combined contributions from pharmaceutical companies, health insurance companies, hospitals, and other health professions. As a result, these other groups sometimes can join together to achieve political goals that the AMA opposes. Taken together, these countervailing powers—the various powerful groups and institutions fighting for control over a given arena such as health care—are actively challenging medical dominance. “Key Concepts: Countervailing Powers,” illustrates this concept, using the example of recent policy debates regarding mammograms.
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