Unbiased Analysis of Today's Healthcare Issues

Archive for June, 2007

Vaccination Externalities

Externalities are a basic concept in the economics of health care. Yet actual ACIP policies do not pay significant attention to externality issues. The rationale for vaccination recommendations often doesn’t consider strategies to target sub-populations, such as school children, that are most likely to generate negative externalities by spreading the disease. A paper by Boulier, […]

Read the rest of this entry »

Empirical Findings on P4P

Pay-for-performance (P4P) is one of the latest hot topics in the health policy world. Yet it has not been conclusively answered whether or not P4P incentives affect the quality of care given. Meredith Rosenthal and Richard Frank review some of the more compelling empirical studies in their April 2006 paper in Medical Care Research & […]

Read the rest of this entry »

Economics and QALYs

The New York Times (“…the Money Value of a Person’s Life“) has a non-technical article describing how economists value a year of life.  One standard methodology–the quality-adjusted life year (QALY)  is discussed. “The idea of QALY is to put a value on treatments that may not save lives but improve them. For example, if a […]

Read the rest of this entry »

NYT Magazine: The Money Issue

This Sunday’s New York Times’ Magazine has a bunch of interesting, non-technical articles about income inequality. Should we globalize labor too? “[Development Economist Lant Pritchett] likens the limits on labor mobility to ‘apartheid on a global scale.’” The Inequality Conundrum.  Roger Lowestein discusses the age-old debate between equity and efficiency. Larry Summer’s Evolution.  “The history […]

Read the rest of this entry »

The News Media and Immigration Attitudes

Help a graduate student with their dissertation by completing the following survey:   The News Media and Immigration Attitudes This survey is designed to help us understand what Americans like you think about immigration and the news media. We are very interested in your thoughts on this matter and greatly appreciate your participation. Click here […]

Read the rest of this entry »

End Stage Renal Disease: An International Comparison

How do medical expenditures affect mortality for end-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients? Avi Dor, Mark Pauly, Margaret Eichleay and Philip Held try to answer this question with data from 12 developed countries (“ESRD and Economic Incentives“). The authors end up finding that increased expenditures on ESRD have no statistically significant affect on mortality. The correlation […]

Read the rest of this entry »

Gordon Hanson in The Economist

UCSD professor Gordon Hanson‘s recent work on immigration was recently cited in The Economist (“Guests v Gatecrashers“). The article states: Its laws of motion are set out in a recent paper [‘The Economic Logic of Illegal Immigration‘] by Gordon Hanson of the University of California, San Diego. He points out that unskilled labour is increasingly […]

Read the rest of this entry »

Cavalcade of Risk: 1st Anniversary Edition

The First Anniversary Edition of the Cavalcade of Risk has been posted Hank Stern’s InsureBlog.

Read the rest of this entry »

Adjusting Nursing Home Quality Measures

The Nursing Home Compare website provides consumers with quality ratings of thousands of nursing homes (NHs) around the country. Are these ratings accurate? Could they be improved? This is the question which researchers Arling, Lewis, Kane, Mueller and Flood analyze in their 2007 HSR paper. The authors find 2 major flaws with the rankings: 1) […]

Read the rest of this entry »

Medical costs contribute to half of bankruptcies

According to a 2005 Health Affairs article by Himmelstein et al. (“Illness And Injury As Contributors To Bankruptcy“), about half of all individuals filing for personal bankruptcy cite medical expenses as one of the major causes.   A lapse in insurance coverage contributed to many of these high medical expenses which lead to the bankruptcy.

Read the rest of this entry »