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Insights / Research BriefMay 13, 2024

Is There Too Little Antitrust Enforcement in the US Hospital Sector?

Zarek Brot-Goldberg, Zack Cooper, Stuart V. Craig, Lev Klarnet
Twenty percent of US hospital mergers that occurred between 2002 and 2020 could have been predicted to lessen competition using the Federal Trade Commission’s standard screening tools. From 2010-2015, predictably anticompetitive mergers increased prices by over 5%.
Topics:  Health care
Insights / Research BriefOct 03, 2023

Private Actions in the Presence of Externalities: The Health Impacts of Reducing Air Pollution Peaks but not Ambient Exposure

Joshua Dean, Susanna B. Berkouwer
Improved cookstoves reduce exposure to peak cooking emissions by 42%, though impacts on overall pollution exposure are muted by high ambient pollution. The reduction in peak emissions reduces self-reported respiratory symptoms but does not improve more quantitative diagnoses such as blood pressure or blood oxygen.
Topics:  Development Economics, Energy & Environment, Health care
Insights / Research BriefAug 29, 2023

Monitoring for Waste: Evidence from Medicare Audits

Maggie Shi
Every dollar Medicare spent on monitoring generates $24–29 in government savings, mainly from the deterrence of medically unnecessary future care. Monitoring increases upfront investments in technology to assess the necessity of care.
Topics:  Health care
Insights / Research BriefJul 14, 2023

Who Values Human Capitalists’ Human Capital? The Earnings and Labor Supply of U.S. Physicians

Joshua D. Gottlieb, Maria Polyakova, Hugh Shiplett, Kevin Rinz, Victoria Udalova
Physicians’ annual earnings average $350,000 and comprise 8.6% of national healthcare spending. Government policy has a major impact on earnings: 25% of incremental Medicare spending on physician care goes to physicians personally, and physicians earn 6% of public money spent on insurance expansions.
Topics:  Health care
Insights / Research BriefApr 19, 2023

The Health Wedge and Labor Market Inequality

Amy Finkelstein, Casey C. McQuillan, Owen M. Zidar, Eric Zwick
The pervasiveness of employer-provided healthcare in the United States contributes to labor market inequality; under an alternative scenario where healthcare is funded by a payroll tax on firms, the college-wage premium would be 11% lower. If healthcare costs had grown at the rate of other countries, inequality would have grown less as well.
Topics:  Employment & Wages, Health care
Insights / Research BriefMar 17, 2023

Market Size and Trade in Medical Services

Jonathan I. Dingel, Joshua D. Gottlieb, Maya Lozinski, Pauline Mourot
Larger regions are more efficient at producing medical services. This leaves policymakers with a trade-off between concentrating medical care production in more efficient large regions and promoting healthcare access in less efficient small regions. Production and travel subsidies can both increase access to healthcare but impact patients, providers, and neighboring regions differently.
Topics:  Health care
Insights / Research BriefFeb 09, 2023

Do Conflict of Interests Disclosures Work? Evidence From Citations In Medical Journals

Christian Leuz, Anup Malani, Maximilian Muhn, Laszlo Jakab
Disclosures of financial ties between drug companies and researchers in medical journals negatively affect readers’ citation behavior, consistent with the hypothesis that other researchers discount articles with disclosed conflicts.
Topics:  Health care
Insights / Research BriefJan 26, 2023

Rationing Medicine Through Bureaucracy: Authorization Restrictions in Medicare

Zarek Brot-Goldberg, Samantha Burn, Timothy Layton, Boris Vabson
Beneficiaries of Medicare Part D who face restrictions on a drug reduce their use by 26.8%, reducing drug spending by $96 per beneficiary-year, while only generating about $10 in paperwork costs.
Topics:  Health care