"Technological Innovation and Health Outcomes: A New Look"
12:00 - 1:30 PM
Colonial Penn Center Auditorium
A critical question in health policy is whether the U.S. is getting its
money's worth from the rising cost of health care. Several influential
studies using time-series data have suggested that the answer is yes;
while health care costs have risen over time, so also has longevity and
functioning. Other studies using cross sectional evidence have found the
reverse; one set of studies even found worse outcomes from greater spending.
This research reconsiders this question using a longitudinal cross-section
data set from 1989 through 2000 for Medicare enrollees hospitalized for
Acute Myocardial Infarction (AMI, or heart attacks) and hip fractures.
These data suggest that (at least since the mid-1990s) rising health care
costs may not be worth it with respect to improved survival. Finally,
we address whether regions experiencing the greatest increase in costs,
or the greatest technological innovations, also experience the greatest
improvement in outcomes.
JONATHAN SKINNER is the John French Professor of Economics, Dartmouth
College, and a professor in the Department of Community and Family Medicine,
Dartmouth Medical School with an appointment in the Center for Evaluative
Clinical Research. He received his Ph.D. in economics from UCLA, and has
been a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research
since 1989. Professor Skinner is currently the editor of the Journal of
Human Resources, and is a past recipient of the TIAA-CREF Paul A. Samuelson
Award of Excellence. Prior to joining the Dartmouth faculty, he taught
at the University of Virginia, Harvard University, Stanford University,
and the University of Washington. Professor Skinner's research has focused
on the adequacy of saving for retirement, and the efficiency and equity
of health care in the United States.