Are health care prices falling?

It seems like everything just gets more and more expensive.  But are prices for medical care declining?  Cutler et al. (1998) found in seminal paper “Are medical prices declining? Evidence for heart attack treatments” that while unadjusted prices of medical care were in fact rising, quality-adjusted health care costs actually were falling.  In my own…

AMA recommends that physicians should learn about health economics

Should physicians learn about health economics? The American Medical Association (AMA) thinks so. In a statement from 2019, the organization stated The American Medical Association (AMA) today adopted new policy expanding its efforts aimed at ensuring all medical students and residents receive training in health care economics. Building on the AMA’s ongoing work to transform…

When is full health insurance not optimal

In many markets, however, we observe that lower income individuals do not purchase the most generous forms of health insurance. For instance, despite the passage of the Affordable Care Act–which provided subsidies to lower income individuals to purchase relatively generous insurance–some individuals preferred the less generous Association Health Plans (AHPs) also known as “skinny” health…

The Economics of Foster Care

This is something I knew very little about and thus Bald et al. (2022) NBER working paper was fascinating to read. They describe the key tension of foster care: failing to put at risk children in foster care may expose them to abuse or neglect; however putting too many at risk children into foster care…

Oleg Itskhoki wins Clark Medal

The 2022 winner of the John Bates Clark medal is Oleg Itskhoki. Each year, the medal goes to the American economist under the age of 40 who made the most significant contribution to economic thought and knowledge. Below is a summary of his research from the American Economic Association (AEA) website. One key finding is…