IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Hospital ownership, reimbursement systems and mortality rates


  • Carine Milcent


This paper analyses the effect of ownership and system of reimbursement on mortality rates. From the statistical results we could conclude that the incentive created by fee-for-service reimbursement yields a four-point reduction in the mortality rate. However, this ranking of hospital quality is completely dependent on the characteristics and illness severity of patients. To take this difficulty into account, we use an innovative duration model applied to panel data: a duration model with both patient and hospital unobserved heterogeneity. No distributional assumptions are made regarding the latter. By this way, we control the fact that patients admitted to the private sector can be different in terms of disease severity from patients admitted to the public sector. The capacity to perform innovative procedures has more effect on the mortality than the system of reimbursement and|or ownership. As such, private sector hospitals that perform more innovative procedures provide a better quality of care, measured by the probability of dying. Nevertheless, heterogeneity within hospitals is greater in for-profit hospitals than in other types of hospital. This suggests that, by choosing a for-profit hospital, patients have on average a lower instantaneous probability of dying but are less sure about the quality of the hospital. Copyright © 2005 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Suggested Citation

  • Carine Milcent, 2005. "Hospital ownership, reimbursement systems and mortality rates," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 14(11), pages 1151-1168.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:hlthec:v:14:y:2005:i:11:p:1151-1168 DOI: 10.1002/hec.1010

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    File Function: Link to full text; subscription required
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Sloan, Frank A. & Picone, Gabriel A. & TaylorJr., Donald H. & Chou, Shin-Yi, 2001. "Hospital ownership and cost and quality of care: is there a dime's worth of difference?," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 1-21, January.
    2. Daniel P. Kessler & Mark B. McClellan, 2000. "Is Hospital Competition Socially Wasteful?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 115(2), pages 577-615.
    3. Propper, Carol & Burgess, Simon & Green, Katherine, 2004. "Does competition between hospitals improve the quality of care?: Hospital death rates and the NHS internal market," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(7-8), pages 1247-1272, July.
    4. McClellan Mark & Staiger Douglas, 2000. "Comparing the Quality of Health Care Providers," Forum for Health Economics & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 3(1), pages 1-26, January.
    5. Joel L. Horowitz, 1999. "Semiparametric Estimation of a Proportional Hazard Model with Unobserved Heterogeneity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 67(5), pages 1001-1028, September.
    6. Gowrisankaran, Gautam & Town, Robert J., 1999. "Estimating the quality of care in hospitals using instrumental variables," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(6), pages 747-767, December.
    7. Gabriel Picone & Shin-Yi Chou & Frank Sloan, 2002. "Are For-Profit Hospital Conversions Harmful to Patients and to Medicare?," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 33(3), pages 507-523, Autumn.
    8. John Geweke & Gautam Gowrisankaran & Robert J. Town, 2003. "Bayesian Inference for Hospital Quality in a Selection Model," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 71(4), pages 1215-1238, July.
    9. Heckman, James & Singer, Burton, 1984. "A Method for Minimizing the Impact of Distributional Assumptions in Econometric Models for Duration Data," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(2), pages 271-320, March.
    10. Mark B. McClellan & Douglas O. Staiger, 2000. "Comparing Hospital Quality at For-Profit and Not- for-Profit Hospitals," NBER Chapters,in: The Changing Hospital Industry: Comparing For-Profit and Not-for-Profit Institutions, pages 93-112 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. Mark McClellan & Douglas Staiger, 1999. "The Quality of Health Care Providers," NBER Working Papers 7327, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    12. Pauly, Mark V & Redisch, Michael, 1973. "The Not-For-Profit Hospital as a Physicians' Cooperative," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 63(1), pages 87-99, March.
    13. Elaine Silverman & Jonathan Skinner, 2001. "Are For-Profit Hospitals Really Different? Medicare Upcoding and Market Structure," NBER Working Papers 8133, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Ho, Vivian & Hamilton, Barton H., 2000. "Hospital mergers and acquisitions: does market consolidation harm patients?," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(5), pages 767-791, September.
    15. Barton H. Hamilton & Vivian H. Hamilton, 1997. "Estimating surgical volume-outcome relationships applying survival models: accounting for frailty and hospital fixed effects," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 6(4), pages 383-395.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Hentschker, Corinna & Mennicken, Roman, 2012. "The Relationship between Quality and Hospital Case Volume – An Empirical Examination with German Data," Ruhr Economic Papers 341, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
    2. Laurent Gobillon & Carine Milcent, 2013. "Spatial disparities in hospital performance," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 13(6), pages 1013-1040, November.
    3. Paul H. Jensen & Elizabeth Webster & Julia Witt, 2009. "Hospital type and patient outcomes: an empirical examination using AMI readmission and mortality records," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 18(12), pages 1440-1460.
    4. Hentschker, Corinna & Mennicken, Roman, 2014. "Selective-referral and unobserved patient heterogeneity - Bias in the volume-outcome relationship," Annual Conference 2014 (Hamburg): Evidence-based Economic Policy 100299, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    5. Kurt R. Brekke & Luigi Siciliani & Odd Rune Straume, 2011. "Quality competition with profit constraints: Do non-profit firms provide higher quality than for-profit firms?," NIPE Working Papers 05/2011, NIPE - Universidade do Minho.
    6. Brigitte Dormont & Carine Milcent, 2012. "Comment évaluer la productivité et l'efficacité des hôpitaux publics et privés ? Les enjeux de la convergence tarifaire," Économie et Statistique, Programme National Persée, vol. 455(1), pages 143-173.
    7. Luigi Siciliani & Peter Sivey & Andrew Street, 2011. "Differences in Length of Stay between Public Hospitals, Treatment Centres and Private Providers: Selection or Efficiency?," Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series wp2011n06, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne.
    8. Martine Bellanger & Laurent Tardif, 2006. "Accounting and reimbursement schemes for inpatient care in France," Health Care Management Science, Springer, vol. 9(3), pages 295-305, August.
    9. repec:hal:journl:halshs-00879787 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Hentschker, Corinna & Mennicken, Roman & Reifferscheid, Antonius & Wasem, Jürgen & Wübker, Ansgar, 2017. "Volume-outcome relationship and minimum volume regulations in the German hospital sector: Evidence from nationwide administrative hospital data for the year 2005-2007," Ruhr Economic Papers 720, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
    11. Brekke, Kurt R. & Siciliani, Luigi & Straume, Odd Rune, 2012. "Quality competition with profit constraints," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 84(2), pages 642-659.
    12. repec:zbw:rwirep:0527 is not listed on IDEAS
    13. Corinna Hentschker & Roman Mennicken, 2014. "Selective-referral and Unobserved Patient Heterogeneity – Bias in the Volume-outcome Relationship," Ruhr Economic Papers 0527, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
    14. repec:zbw:rwirep:0341 is not listed on IDEAS
    15. Giuseppe Moscelli & Hugh Gravelle & Luigi Siciliani & Nils Gutacker, 2017. "The effect of hospital ownership on quality of care: evidence from England," Working Papers 145cherp, Centre for Health Economics, University of York.
    16. Mareike Heimeshoff & Jonas Schreyögg & Oliver Tiemann, 2014. "Employment effects of hospital privatization in Germany," The European Journal of Health Economics, Springer;Deutsche Gesellschaft für Gesundheitsökonomie (DGGÖ), vol. 15(7), pages 747-757, September.
    17. repec:dau:papers:123456789/7738 is not listed on IDEAS
    18. Corinna Hentschker & Roman Mennicken, 2012. "The Relationship between Quality and Hospital Case Volume – An Empirical Examination with German Data," Ruhr Economic Papers 0341, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    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:wly:hlthec:v:14:y:2005:i:11:p:1151-1168. 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-Blackwell Digital Licensing) or (Christopher F. Baum). General contact details of provider: .

    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.