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The value of Medicare managed care plans and their prescription drug benefits


  • Anne E. Hall


I estimate the welfare, both gross and net, provided by the Medicare managed care program in 1999 through 2002. First, I estimate a model of demand for the benefits offered by managed care plans to Medicare beneficiaries. I then use the demand estimates to form estimates of welfare provided by the program. Medicare beneficiaries derived $14.9 billion of gross welfare per year from the Medicare HMO program. Depending on the amount of selection in the program, the Medicare managed care program provided from -$10.3 billion to $35.1 billion of net welfare total over the four-year period. I also estimate the welfare that beneficiaries receive from the prescription drug benefits offered by Medicare HMOs. HMO enrollees in plans offering drugs received on average $13 of consumer surplus per month from the drug benefits in 1999, and this estimate drops to $10 by 2002.

Suggested Citation

  • Anne E. Hall, 2007. "The value of Medicare managed care plans and their prescription drug benefits," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2007-19, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedgfe:2007-19

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Abraham, Jean, et al, 2000. "Enter at Your Own Risk: HMO Participation and Enrollment in the Medicare Risk Market," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 38(3), pages 385-401, July.
    2. Small, Kenneth A & Rosen, Harvey S, 1981. "Applied Welfare Economics with Discrete Choice Models," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(1), pages 105-130, January.
    3. Nevo, Aviv, 2001. "Measuring Market Power in the Ready-to-Eat Cereal Industry," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 69(2), pages 307-342, March.
    4. Arellano, M, 1987. "Computing Robust Standard Errors for Within-Groups Estimators," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 49(4), pages 431-434, November.
    5. Town, Robert & Liu, Su, 2003. " The Welfare Impact of Medicare HMOs," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 34(4), pages 719-736, Winter.
    6. Mark V. Pauly & Yuhui Zeng, 2003. "Adverse Selection and the Challenges to Stand-Alone Prescription Drug Insurance," NBER Working Papers 9919, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Steven T. Berry, 1994. "Estimating Discrete-Choice Models of Product Differentiation," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 25(2), pages 242-262, Summer.
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    Cited by:

    1. Duggan, Mark & Starc, Amanda & Vabson, Boris, 2016. "Who benefits when the government pays more? Pass-through in the Medicare Advantage program," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 141(C), pages 50-67.

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    Medicare ; Medical care;


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