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Beneficiary price sensitivity in the Medicare prescription drug plan market

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  • Austin B. Frakt
  • Steven D. Pizer
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    Abstract

    The Medicare stand-alone prescription drug plan (PDP) came into existence in 2006 as part of the Medicare prescription drug benefit. It is the most popular plan type among Medicare drug plans and large numbers of plans are available to all beneficiaries. In this article we present the first analysis of beneficiary price sensitivity in the PDP market. Our estimate of elasticity of enrollment with respect to premium, −1.45, is larger in magnitude than has been found in the Medicare HMO market. This high degree of beneficiary price sensitivity for PDPs is consistent with relatively low product differentiation, low fixed costs of entry in the PDP market, and the fact that, in contrast to changing HMOs, beneficiaries can select a PDP without disrupting doctor-patient relationships. Published in 2009 by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1002/hec.1451
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. in its journal Health Economics.

    Volume (Year): 19 (2010)
    Issue (Month): 1 ()
    Pages: 88-100

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    Handle: RePEc:wly:hlthec:v:19:y:2010:i:1:p:88-100

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    Web page: http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/cgi-bin/jhome/5749

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    1. Nevo, Aviv, 1999. "Measuring Market Power in the Ready-to-Eat Cereal Industry," Competition Policy Center, Working Paper Series qt7cm5p858, Competition Policy Center, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
    2. Douglas Staiger & James H. Stock, 1994. "Instrumental Variables Regression with Weak Instruments," NBER Technical Working Papers 0151, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Town, Robert & Liu, Su, 2003. " The Welfare Impact of Medicare HMOs," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 34(4), pages 719-36, Winter.
    4. Steven D. Pizer & Austin B. Frakt & Roger Feldman, 2008. "Predicting risk selection following major changes in medicare," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 17(4), pages 453-468.
    5. D. McFadden & J. Hausman, 1981. "Specification Tests for the Multinominal Logit Model," Working papers 292, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
    6. Berry, Steven & Levinsohn, James & Pakes, Ariel, 1995. "Automobile Prices in Market Equilibrium," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(4), pages 841-90, July.
    7. Steven T. Berry, 1994. "Estimating Discrete-Choice Models of Product Differentiation," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 25(2), pages 242-262, Summer.
    8. Jerry HAUSMAN & Gregory LEONARD & J. Douglas ZONA, 1994. "Competitive Analysis with Differentiated Products," Annales d'Economie et de Statistique, ENSAE, issue 34, pages 159-180.
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    Cited by:
    1. Kesternich, Iris & Heiss, Florian & McFadden, Daniel & Winter, Joachim, 2013. "Suit the action to the word, the word to the action: Hypothetical choices and real decisions in Medicare Part D," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(6), pages 1313-1324.

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