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Health care report cards—public disclosure of patient health outcomes at the level of the individual physician or hospital or both—may address important informational asymmetries in markets for health care, but they may also give doctors and hospitals incentives to decline to treat more difficult, severely ill patients. Whether report cards are good for(More)
We estimate the effects of hospital competition on the level of and the variation in quality of care and hospital expenditures for elderly Medicare beneficiaries with heart attack. We compare competition's effects on more-severely ill patients, whom we assume value quality more highly, to the effects on less-severely ill, low-valuation patients. We find(More)
To develop new evidence on how hospital ownership and other aspects of hospital market composition affect health care productivity, we analyze longitudinal data on the medical expenditures and health outcomes of the vast majority of nonrural elderly Medicare beneficiaries hospitalized for new heart attacks over the period 1985-1996. We find that the effects(More)
for excellent research assistance, and Steven Allen for helpful advice on union wage contracts. The views expressed herein are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the National Bureau of Economic Research. ABSTRACT Prevailing wage laws, which require that construction workers employed by private contractors on public projects be paid at least(More)
The recent rise of specialty hospitals--typically for-profit firms that are at least partially owned by physicians--has led to substantial debate about their effects on the cost and quality of care. Advocates of specialty hospitals claim they improve quality and lower cost; critics contend they concentrate on providing profitable procedures and attracting(More)
In this paper, we estimate the effect of the tax preference for health insurance on health care spending using data from the Medical Expenditure Panel Surveys from 1996-2005. We use the fact that Social Security taxes are only levied on earnings below a statutory threshold to identify the impact of the tax preference. Because employer-sponsored health(More)
During the contest for Kansas attorney general in 2006, an organization sent out 6 pieces of mail criticizing the incumbent's conduct in office. We exploit a discontinuity in the rule used to select which households received the mailings to identify the causal effect of mail on vote choice and voter turnout. We find these mailings had both a statistically(More)
Recent legislation has expanded the jurisdiction of the federal government over crimes that were traditionally prohibited only by state law. Previous work has neglected the potentially important role of prosecutors' incentives in allocating cases to the federal and state systems. We model the decision-making process of state and federal prosecutors, and,(More)
INTRODUCTION The Unified Medical Language System (UMLS) Knowledge Sources embody a rich source of medical knowledge. We sought to extract a portion of this knowledge by incorporating information about relationships between UMLS concepts into an existing problem list vocabulary. METHODS We matched terms from the coded problem list of The Medical Record(More)
Although the direct costs of the medical liability system account for a small fraction of total health spending, the system's indirect effects on cost and quality of care can be much more important. Here, we summarise findings of existing research on the effects of the medical liability systems of Australia, the UK, and the USA. We find systematic evidence(More)