Does your mortality rate increase when your doctor is out of town?

According to a paper by Jena et al. (2014), the answer is no. The paper examines 30-day mortality rates for Medicare patients admitted to the hospital with acute myocardial infarction (AMI) or heart failure and compares “…mortality and treatment differences…during dates of national cardiology meetings compared with nonmeeting dates.mortality rates “during dates of national cardiology…

What is attribute non-attendance?

In discrete choice experiments (DCEs), respondents are asked to choose amoung different options which vary across different attributes. For instance, a DCE on mobile phone preferences could have processor speed, battery life, screen size and cost as attributes. A DCE looking at different treatments could have expected survival, anticipated side effects and cost as attributes.…

The Standard Gamble

One concept often used in healthcare is the quality-adjusted life years (QALY).  The concept is fairly simple.  It assumes that people value one year of life in perfect health at 1; people who die have a value of a life year of 0.  One year of life where you have 50% health is then valued…

How did Obamacare affect Medicaid enrollment?

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) contained the provision requiring States to significantly expand Medicaid eligibility. The Supreme Court, however, ruled that states had the option of implementing this provision.  Thus, the change in Medicaid eligibility and subsequent enrollment varied significantly across states based largely on whether or not they were an expansion state.  A recent…

Public Employee Health Insurance Data Sources

What data sources are available to measure active and retired public employees health insurance?  A study by Morrill (2014) outline several data sources that identify federal, state, and local government employees to answer this question.  The following tables are excepted from her article. Sources: Melinda Sandler Morrill. Active and retired public employees’ health insurance: Potential data sources.…

Insurance does not equal health care

One part of the Affordable Care Act extended Medicaid benefits to millions of Americans.  One problem, however, is that patients with Medicaid insurance often have trouble finding doctors who will treat them.  The New York Times reports: Large numbers of doctors who are listed as serving Medicaid patients are not available to treat them, federal…