Martin Gaynor, PhD recently visited Penn and presented his new paper, “The Price Ain’t Right? Hospital Prices and Health Spending on the Privately Insured” (co-authored by Zack Cooper, Stuart Craig, and John Van Reenen). The national study was the first to analyze health care spending and hospital transaction prices among the privately insured—an analysis made possible by the availability of data from three of the largest private insurers in the U.S.
h/t Paul Houchens
An interesting chart by Milliman caught my eye today. Here it is:
Six LDI affiliates have signed on to an open letter to the Presidential candidates urging them to address the burden of chronic disease in the US. The letter, organized by the Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease and signed by 85 health economists from across the political spectrum, focuses on the connection between wealth and health.
A new study casts doubt on the effectiveness of reducing health insurance premiums as a way to encourage employees to lose weight. LDI Senior Fellow Mitesh Patel and his team, in a randomized controlled trial, test the effectiveness of a $550 incentive in promoting weight loss in obese employees. They found no difference in weight loss over the course of one year between the control group and three different kinds of incentive programs.
2015 was quite a year for the LDI Blog. It got a new name, Health Policy$ense, which reflects our continuing focus on bringing health economics to bear on health policy issues. In its second full year, the blog had 95 posts, with contributions from our expert Senior Fellows and Fellows, experts from elsewhere, super-smart Penn students and of course our great staff.
In a new LDI/INQRI Research Brief, Erin Fraher, Joanne Spetz, and LDI Senior Fellow Mary Naylor analyze the challenges and opportunities that health system transformation presents to the country’s 2.9 million registered nurses. They explore the new roles and responsibilities for nurses in alternate delivery models such as Accountable Care Organizations and medical homes, and call for changes in nurse education, regulation, and policy.
In a new NEJM Perspective, LDI Fellow Ari Friedman, Brendan Saloner, and Renee Hsia analyze different policies to reduce emergency department (ED) use in Medicaid patients. They advocate strongly for providing Medicaid patients with better alternatives to the ED, rather than discouraging nonemergency ED use by imposing steep copayments.
As they had in an earlier case, a notable group of bipartisan economic scholars and professors have filed an amicus brief in support of the government’s position in King v. Burwell, the Supreme Court case challenging the availability of premium subsidies on the federal exchange. Once again, three Penn professors (and LDI Senior Fellows)—Ezekiel Emanuel, Mark Pauly, and Dan Polsky—signed on to the brief.