Features

The Case of the Cake: Dilemmas of Giving and Taking

In my fieldwork at the Cardiology Unit at Vilnius public hospital I encountered what I call “the cake case.” In 2009-2010 I was in Lithuania to study how medical care was transforming as the state embarked on health care reform that aimed to rationalize and privatize public services. In particular, the neoliberal reform projects targeted informal payments, or “bribes,” that …