Information and Consumer Choice: The Value of Publicized Health Plan Ratings
AbstractWe use data on the enrollment decisions of federal annuitants to estimate the influence of publicized ratings on health plan choice. We focus on the impact of ratings disseminated by the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA), and use our estimates to calculate the value of the information. Our approach exploits a novel feature of the data%u2014the availability of nonpublic plan ratings%u2014to correct for a source of bias that is inherent in studies of consumer responsiveness to information on product quality: since publicized ratings are correlated with other quality signals known to consumers (but unobserved by researchers), the estimated influence of ratings is likely to be overstated. We control for this bias by comparing the estimated impact of publicized ratings to the estimated impact of ratings that were never disclosed. The results indicate that NCQA%u2019s plan ratings had a meaningful influence on individuals%u2019 choices, particularly for individuals choosing a plan for the first time. Although we estimate that a very small fraction of individual decisions were materially affected by the information, for those that were affected the implied utility gains are substantial.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 11514.
Date of creation: Aug 2005
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
Web page: http://www.nber.org
More information through EDIRC
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- I11 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Analysis of Health Care Markets
- L15 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Information and Product Quality
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Grossman, Sanford J, 1981. "The Informational Role of Warranties and Private Disclosure about Product Quality," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 24(3), pages 461-83, December.
- Scanlon, Dennis P. & Chernew, Michael & McLaughlin, Catherine & Solon, Gary, 2002. "The impact of health plan report cards on managed care enrollment," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 19-41, January.
- Paul R. Milgrom, 1979.
"Good Nevs and Bad News: Representation Theorems and Applications,"
407R, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
- Paul R. Milgrom, 1981. "Good News and Bad News: Representation Theorems and Applications," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 12(2), pages 380-391, Autumn.
- Boyan Jovanovic, 1982. "Truthful Disclosure of Information," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 13(1), pages 36-44, Spring.
- Beaulieu, Nancy Dean, 2002. "Quality information and consumer health plan choices," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 43-63, January.
- Bundorf, M. Kate & Chun, Natalie & Goda, Gopi Shah & Kessler, Daniel P., 2009.
"Do markets respond to quality information? The case of fertility clinics,"
Journal of Health Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 28(3), pages 718-727, May.
- M. Kate Bundorf & Natalie Chun & Gopi Shah Goda & Daniel P. Kessler, 2008. "Do Markets Respond to Quality Information? The Case of Fertility Clinics," NBER Working Papers 13888, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Wang, Justin & Hockenberry, Jason & Chou, Shin-Yi & Yang, Muzhe, 2011.
"Do bad report cards have consequences? Impacts of publicly reported provider quality information on the CABG market in Pennsylvania,"
Journal of Health Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 392-407, March.
- Justin Wang & Jason Hockenberry & Shin-Yi Chou & Muzhe Yang, 2010. "Do Bad Report Cards Have Consequences? Impacts of Publicly Reported Provider Quality Information on the CABG Market in Pennsylvania," NBER Working Papers 16225, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Sridhar Narayanan & Pradeep Chintagunta & Eugenio Miravete, 2007. "The role of self selection, usage uncertainty and learning in the demand for local telephone service," Quantitative Marketing and Economics, Springer, vol. 5(1), pages 1-34, March.
- M. Bundorf & Jonathan Levin & Neale Mahoney, 2008.
"Pricing and Welfare in Health Plan Choice,"
07-047, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ().
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.