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Introduction

Welcome to the Harbus Special Section on the Healthcare Industry. This is the first of a series of Special Sections that the Harbus will devote to in-depth examinations of some trends and issues in leading industries. We chose to begin with Healthcare because it is something that touches us all. The Healthcare industry is the 800-pound gorilla of the US economy, accounting for a full 14% of the US economy in 1999. Even though Healthcare companies occupy only two spots in the Dow Jones index, this $1.2 trillion industry cannot help but play an outsize role in determining the trajectory of the economy. At the time of this writing, Healthcare stocks accounted for 13.7% of the value of the more-representative S&P 500 index. As time marches on, medical knowledge seems to expand exponentially as scientists learn more and more about what makes us tick. This not only leads to the creation of extremely valuable corporate entities, but it also has a real impact on our collective health, and therefore on our welfare, standard of living and economic productivity. Healthcare matters, and so below we take a look at some major trends that are likely to have a real impact on our lives and economy. We are eager for your feedback, so please share your thoughts with us at [email protected] Thanks and enjoy…

April 23, 2001
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