Wait times and Mortality

Does waiting longer for a medical appointment increase mortality? According to Julia Prentice and Steven Piezer’s 2007 article it does. The authors have data regarding individual wait times for Veterans Affairs (VA) geriatric visits as well as subsequent mortality data on each individual. There are two major problems when trying to link increased wait times…

The Economics of Religion

Since Easter just passed yesterady and we are still in the midst of the Passover holiday, today I decided to blog on the economics of religion.  No, this title is not an oxymoron. A Businessweek article from 2004 (“Economists are getting religion“) cites the Economics of Religion as an emerging field.  One of the leading…

Operating on Commission

I have recently finished the latest draft of a working paper titled “Operating on commission: Analyzing how physician financial incentives affect surgery rates using nationally representative household data.” It should be interesting to readers who wonder how financial incentives affect specialist care provision. Below is the paper’s abstract. Any comments regarding the paper’s contents would…

Who is sick?

I recently came across an interesting idea based on the HousingMaps model: have individuals report their own illnesses in order to have a better idea of public health. This is the plan for the start-up Who is Sick? website. The site aims to provide health information to the public by tracking and monitoring current and…

Mortality, Mass-Layoffs and Career Outcomes

A few weeks ago I was able to attend Till von Wachter’s presentation on his working paper “Mortality, Mass-Layoffs, and Career Outcomes: An Analysis using Administrative Data,” co-written with Daniel Sullivan. The authors investigated whether or not losing one’s job affects mortality rates. There could be many reasons why losing one’s job may affect mortality.…

Business and the Left Unite?

There is an interesting article in last Sunday’s New York Times Magazine (“What’s the one thing…“) regarding how some business leaders and Democratic politicians are uniting to fight for universal health care. The CEOs want to be relieved of financing a safety net for their employees (i.e.: health insurance and pensions) and the left is…