Private versus Public Goods in Healthcare – Health System Example

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"Private versus Public Goods in Healthcare" is a perfect example of a paper on the health system. Private goods in healthcare are excludable as compared to the public ones, which are generally non-excludable. A non-excludable good is available to all people. Every person can benefit from it at no financial cost. A good example is the Human papillomavirus vaccine. It is a vaccine used to prevent women from contracting cervical cancer. The vaccine is a public good. It is not left to the private sector of healthcare. This is because much of the private goods are excludable.

Not everyone can consume the product especially if people are unwilling or unable to pay for it. The private healthcare sector has no property rights to sell this kind of vaccine. Most of the private goods in healthcare are profit-oriented. Additionally, a public good in healthcare has a non-rival consumption feature. Their consumption by one person causes no reduction in their availability to another person. For instance, the Human papillomavirus vaccine is administered or prescribed to all young women in a given country or region in the same equal measure.

The government should be actively involved in the financing as well as the distribution of this vaccine. This would imply that all the citizens have benefited universally without any trace of partiality (The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2013; National Cancer Institute, n.d. ). The supply of this sensitive good should not be left to the private sector. It might encounter such challenges as undersupply and lack of knowledge. Therefore, in order to avoid unnecessary externalities, the government should make every effort to provide the citizens with universal healthcare services including Human papillomavirus vaccination.      


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2013). HPV vaccines. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Retrieved from:

National Cancer Institute. (n.d.). Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccines. National Institute of Health. Retrieved from:

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