The power of the medical profession is based on autonomy and monopoly of knowledge, technique, and expertise; and furthermore it's sponsored by various governmental authorizations. However, this autonomous status of profession itself does not warrant the production of the economic and social efficiency. This phenomenon is especially eminent in the democratizing societies, where the rapidly weakening authoritative state capacity sets off professional power abuse and self‐interested actions. Hence, being a sponsor for professionalism generally and as a protector of doctoring in particular, how the state can check and balance these knowledge‐based, vocational autonomous technical elites, preventing them from the abuse of public interest for the purpose of private gain, is a dilemma of social control for the democratizing state.
This project analyzes the institutional structure and process of the medical pricing policy of Taiwanese healthcare insurances (former Healthcare program of Labor Insurance under the authoritarian rule and recent National Healthcare Insurance in democratizing context). By probing into the interactions and the relations between the state and medical profession and specially focusing on the effects of institutions on political behavior and public policy outcomes, the project argues that the structure of Taiwanese political institutions systematically influences both the types of interests and ideas that enter into political debates and the kinds of policies that country adopt.