IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/bla/coecpo/v27y2009i4p462-474.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Health Care In The United States: Why Is Supply So Price Insensitive?

Author

Listed:
  • MONICA DAS
  • SANDWIP K. DAS

Abstract

Health spending as a percentage of gross domestic product in the U.S. economy is growing, from 5% in 1960 to about 16% in the current period, and it is predicted to grow to as much as 30% in 2050. Then why is the supply of health care in the United States so insensitive to steeply rising prices? This paper conducts an econometric study to show that high health‐care costs have an adverse impact on labor productivity, causing a negative production externality in all industries. So, can the rising cost of health‐care affect the U.S. comparative advantage? The paper seeks answers to these questions in a general equilibrium model and finds that the labor productivity shock is responsible for the sluggish or declining supply of health care. Consumers are able to afford less health care due to a possible decline in real wages. U.S. comparative advantage becomes a nonissue, provided that the equilibrium is stable in spite of a negatively sloped health‐care supply curve. Negative externality, leading to market failure, may be addressed in two alternative ways. (JEL F11, I11, I12, I18)

Suggested Citation

  • Monica Das & Sandwip K. Das, 2009. "Health Care In The United States: Why Is Supply So Price Insensitive?," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 27(4), pages 462-474, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:coecpo:v:27:y:2009:i:4:p:462-474
    DOI: 10.1111/j.1465-7287.2009.00138.x
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1465-7287.2009.00138.x
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Coate, Stephen, 1995. "Altruism, the Samaritan's Dilemma, and Government Transfer Policy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(1), pages 46-57, March.
    2. Robert E. Hall & Charles I. Jones, 2007. "The Value of Life and the Rise in Health Spending," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 122(1), pages 39-72.
    3. David M. Cutler & Jonathan Gruber, 1996. "Does Public Insurance Crowd out Private Insurance?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 111(2), pages 391-430.
    4. Mundlak, Yair, 1978. "On the Pooling of Time Series and Cross Section Data," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(1), pages 69-85, January.
    5. Ronald W. Jones, 1965. "The Structure of Simple General Equilibrium Models," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 73, pages 557-557.
    6. R. Melvin, James & Warne, Robert D., 1973. "Monopoly and the theory of international trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(2), pages 117-134, May.
    7. Cardon, James H & Hendel, Igal, 2001. "Asymmetric Information in Health Insurance: Evidence from the National Medical Expenditure Survey," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 32(3), pages 408-427, Autumn.
    8. Mussa, Michael, 1979. "The two-sector model in terms of its dual : A geometric exposition," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(4), pages 513-526, November.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F11 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Neoclassical Models of Trade
    • I11 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Analysis of Health Care Markets
    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior
    • I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bla:coecpo:v:27:y:2009:i:4:p:462-474. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Wiley Content Delivery). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/weaaaea.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.