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Modeling Area-Level Health Rankings

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  • Charles Courtemanche
  • Samir Soneji
  • Rusty Tchernis

Abstract

We propose a Bayesian factor analysis model to rank the health of localities. Mortality and morbidity variables empirically contribute to the resulting rank, and population and spatial correlation are incorporated into a measure of uncertainty. We use county-level data from Texas and Wisconsin to compare our approach to conventional rankings that assign deterministic factor weights and ignore uncertainty. Greater discrepancies in rankings emerge for Texas than Wisconsin since the differences between the empirically-derived and deterministic weights are more substantial. Uncertainty is evident in both states but becomes especially large in Texas after incorporating noise from imputing its considerable missing data.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 19450.

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Date of creation: Sep 2013
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Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:19450

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  1. Chib, Siddhartha & Greenberg, Edward, 1996. "Markov Chain Monte Carlo Simulation Methods in Econometrics," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge University Press, vol. 12(03), pages 409-431, August.
  2. Hogan J.W. & Tchernis R., 2004. "Bayesian Factor Analysis for Spatially Correlated Data, With Application to Summarizing Area-Level Material Deprivation From Census Data," Journal of the American Statistical Association, American Statistical Association, American Statistical Association, vol. 99, pages 314-324, January.
  3. Doorslaer, Eddy van & Jones, Andrew M., 2003. "Inequalities in self-reported health: validation of a new approach to measurement," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 61-87, January.
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Cited by:
  1. Ian M. McCarthy, 2014. "Treatment Effects on Combined Outcomes: An Application to Health-related Quality-of-life Data," Emory Economics, Department of Economics, Emory University (Atlanta) 1409, Department of Economics, Emory University (Atlanta).

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