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More Evidence on the Quality-Quantity Trade-off in Medical Care


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  • Anca Cotet

    (Department of Economics, Ball State University)

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    This paper investigates the impact of the regulation prohibiting physicians from prescribing drugs without a prior physical examination on health outcomes. This requirement should improve health by reducing illegal access to prescription drugs. On the other hand, it hampers the practice of physician-patient telemedicine, a service evaluated by most previous studies to be of somewhat lower quality but effective in improving access to care. The empirical results suggest that this regulation leads to an increase of approximately 0.2 in the expected monthly number of days lost to illness and 0.4 percent increase in mortality rates the equivalent of 33 more deaths per 1 million people. The magnitude of the impact is larger in rural areas, and in areas with low physician density.

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    File Function: Secon version, March 2010
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Ball State University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 200902.

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    Length: 42 pages
    Date of creation: Feb 2009
    Date of revision: Mar 2010
    Handle: RePEc:bsu:wpaper:200902

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    Related research

    Keywords: Telemedicine; Medical Care Quality;

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    1. Janet Currie & W. Bentley MacLeod, 2008. "First Do No Harm? Tort Reform and Birth Outcomes," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 123(2), pages 795-830, 05.
    2. Leland, Hayne E, 1979. "Quacks, Lemons, and Licensing: A Theory of Minimum Quality Standards," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(6), pages 1328-46, December.
    3. Leffler, Keith B, 1978. "Physician Licensure: Competition and Monopoly in American Medicine," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 21(1), pages 165-86, April.
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    Blog mentions

    As found by, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
    1. New economy shock! Telemedicine can improve people’s health
      by Nicholas Gruen in Club Troppo on 2009-02-02 06:49:36


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