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American Economic Journal: Economic Policy: Vol. 4 No. 3 (August 2012)

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The Doctor Might See You Now: The Supply Side Effects of Public Health Insurance Expansions

Article Citation

Garthwaite, Craig L. 2012. "The Doctor Might See You Now: The Supply Side Effects of Public Health Insurance Expansions." American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, 4(3): 190-215.

DOI: 10.1257/pol.4.3.190

Abstract

In the United States, public health insurance programs cover over 90 million individuals. Expansions of these programs, such as the recently passed Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), may have large effects on physician behavior. This study finds that following the implementation of the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP), physicians decreased the number of hours spent with patients, but increased their program participation. Suggestive evidence shows that this decrease resulted from shorter office visits. These findings are consistent with the predictions from a mixed-economy model of physician behavior and provide evidence of crowd out resulting from the creation of SCHIP. (JEL H75, I11, I13, I18)

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Authors

Garthwaite, Craig L. (Northwestern U)

JEL Classifications

H75: State and Local Government: Health; Education; Welfare; Public Pensions
I11: Analysis of Health Care Markets
I13: Health Insurance, Public and Private
I18: Health: Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health

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