Unbiased Analysis of Today's Healthcare Issues

Archive for June, 2008

Are wet babies healthy babies?

Does rainfall improve health for children in developing countries? Sharon L. Maccini and Dean Yang (2008) hypothesize that higher rainfall will lead to higher incomes for rural household and higher incomes allows increased food purchases and more disposable income to be made available for health care purchases. The authors find that in Indonesia, “[w]omen with […]

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Congress Pushes Curbs on Doctor-Owned Hospitals

The N.Y. Times reports (“Concerned about costs…“) that Congress is trying to impose new restrictions on physician-owned, for-profit hospitals. The legislators fear that these hospitals 1) drive up costs and 2) provide poor quality. Legislators worry that when physicians own the hospital, they may have more of an incentive to order more procedures to increase […]

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Poverty and Health in Developing Countries

Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo find that for rural households, the probability that the mother is alive is 36 percentage points higher if the family has a daily per capita expenditures (DPCE) of $6 to $10 versus a DCPE of $1 to $2.  Using a panel data set specification, the authors also find that adults […]

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Advice for Graduate Students

The Austrian Economists blog has a great post (“Hard Work Pays Off“) giving a bunch of advice for grad students. Below are some of my favorite quotations: Don Lavoie — “Why are you doing this? Don’t ever forget your answer to that question.” James Buchanan — “All work is work in progress. Don’t get it […]

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The Moral of the Story

What’s a doctor to do when a child comes in with the symptoms of vomiting, infected ears and being “clingy and cranky”?  Dr. Perri Klass assumed that this was an ear infection, but discussion with the patient’s mother revealed that the child had fallen on his head just a day earlier. Should the doctor order […]

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Mandatory Seat Belt laws

A recent paper in the May 2008 edition of the Journal of Health Economics by Carpentera and Stehr finds that mandatory seat belt laws save lives. “…we find consistent evidence that state mandatory seatbelt laws – particularly those permitting primary enforcement – significantly increased seatbelt use among high school age youths by 45–80%, primarily at […]

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Cavalcade of Risk – Second Anniversary Edition

The Second Anniversary edition of the Cavalcade of Risk has been posted at the always informative InsureBlog. Two especially interesting posts from Cato-at-Liberty and Colorado Health Insurance Insider discuss the individual–compared to the group–health insurance market.

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Does Free Health Insurance increase the poor’s access to medical care?

As mentioned in previous posts, most health insurance in the France public health care system involves significant copayments. While this helps to reduce the moral hazard problem, it may prevent poor individuals from utilizing the care they need. In 2000, France introduced free complementary health insurance plan which covers most out-of-pocket payments for the poorest […]

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Custom-made vs. ready-to-wear treatments

When you are sick and need a doctor, you need hope that you are given the best care possible. Most people assume that doctors will tailor their treatments to the individual patient needs. However, a paper by Frank and Zeckhauser (JHE 2007) explain that this may not be the case. The authors claim that there […]

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Michael Grossman wins the Victor Fuchs Lifetime Contribution Award

The American Society of Health Economists (ASHE) has honored Michael Grossman as the winner of the Victor Fuchs Lifetime Contribution Award.  Much of Dr. Grossman’s research deals with child and adolescent health, as well as drug and alcohol use.  An interview with Dr. Grossman is available in the ASHE spring newsletter.

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