Less than a decade ago the notion that a publicly financed health care system would be competing with a privatized alternative would have been unthinkable. A previously inconceivable idea has now found its champions (Herzlinger, 1997). Governments everywhere, including the social market economies of Western Europe, have a new-found interest in privatizing services and redrawing the boundary between the public and the private (Boyer and Drache, 1996). The assumption that private markets somehow on their own could foot the bill for a comprehensive delivery system for most countries deserves a strong but careful rebuttal. This volume takes up the challenge and sets out to explore the deeprooted tensions between publicly funded health care systems and the dynamics of private markets to deliver privately financed systems of health care.