Cannon on P4P

“…purchasers typically reimburse health care providers on the basis of the volume and intensity of the services provided, rather than the quality or cost-effectiveness of those services. The result is a financing system akin to paying academics on the basis of the volume and intensity of footnotes.” This website has blogged extensively on pay-for-performance schemes…

Why doesn’t my doctor prescribe generics?

A letter in the L.A. Times today from a man in Oceanside, California stated the following: “I read with great interest [“Under the Influence“] in the Aug. 6 Health section because I, at one time, would only use brand-name medications.  Even though I belong to a Medicare HMO, the co-pays sometimes were quite substantial.  I…

Maps on acid

The Undergraduate Economist has three interesting maps to consider. The first draws each country with its size proportional to its PPP-adjusted public sector health spending; the second shows territory size proportional to the number of people 15-49 with HIV. The final map shows each country with its territory size proportional to the percent of worldwide…

What do Nonprofit hospitals maximize

Why do nonprofit hospitals exist? If they act exactly as for-profit hospitals, then they should be under private ownership. If they act according to some other maximization strategy, what is it? These are the questions that Jill Horwitz and Austin Nichol look to answer in their 2007 NBER working paper. First, let us examine the…

Japan: A culture of savers?

Many economists claim that Americans are spendthrifts and for good reason. The average American has over $9000 of credit card debt. Why don’t we act more like the Japanese and save? A NBER working paper by Charles Yuji Horioka, Wataru Suzuki, Tatsuo Hatta claim that Japan’s high saving rates in the 70s and 80s were…