Do Report Cards Tell Consumers Anything They Don't Already Know? The Case of Medicare HMOs
The use of government-mandated report cards to diminish uncertainty about the quality of products and services is widespread. However, report cards will have little effect if they simply confirm consumers' prior beliefs. Moreover, documented "responses" to report cards may reflect learning about quality that would have occurred in their absence ("market-based learning"). Using panel data on Medicare HMO market shares between 1994 and 2002, we examine the relationship between enrollment and quality before and after report cards were mailed to 40 million Medicare beneficiaries in 1999 and 2000. We find evidence that consumers learn from both public report cards and market-based sources, with the latter having a larger impact during our study period. Consumers are especially sensitive to both sources of information when the variance in HMO quality is greater. The effect of report cards is driven by beneficiaries' responses to consumer satisfaction scores; other reported quality measures such as the mammography rate did not affect enrollment decisions.
|Date of creation:||Jun 2005|
|Date of revision:|
|Publication status:||published as Dafny, Leemore and David Dranove. “Do Report Cards Tell Consumers Anything They Don’t Already Know? The Case of Medicare HMOs.” The RAND Journal of Economics 39, 3 (Autumn 2008): 790-821.|
|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
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.:
- Mark Israel, 2005. "Services as Experience Goods: An Empirical Examination of Consumer Learning in Automobile Insurance," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(5), pages 1444-1463, December.
- Hubbard, Thomas N, 2002. "How Do Consumers Motivate Experts? Reputational Incentives in an Auto Repair Market," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 45(2), pages 437-68, October.
- David M. Cutler & Robert S. Huckman & Mary Beth Landrum, 2004.
"The Role of Information in Medical Markets: An Analysis of Publicly Reported Outcomes in Cardiac Surgery,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 94(2), pages 342-346, May.
- David M. Cutler & Robert S. Huckman & Mary Beth Landrum, 2004. "The Role of Information in Medical Markets: An Analysis of Publicly Reported Outcomes in Cardiac Surgery," NBER Working Papers 10489, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Cutler, David & Landrum, Mary Beth & Huckman, Robert, 2004. "The Role of Information in Medical Markets: An Analysis of Publicly Reported Outcomes in Cardiac Surgery," Scholarly Articles 2640582, Harvard University Department of Economics.
- 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.
- Robert Town Albert Yung-Hsu Liu, 2003. "The Welfare Impact of Medicare HMOs," Mathematica Policy Research Reports b1604dfa628e4a8c9c751a4ef, Mathematica Policy Research.
- Michael Chernew & Gautam Gowrisankaran & Dennis P. Scanlon, 2001. "Learning and the Value of Information: Evidence From Health Plan Report Cards," NBER Working Papers 8589, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Jacob, Brian A., 2005. "Accountability, incentives and behavior: the impact of high-stakes testing in the Chicago Public Schools," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(5-6), pages 761-796, June.
- Randall P. Ellis, 2012. "risk adjustment," The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics, Palgrave Macmillan.
- Ginger Zhe Jin & Phillip Leslie, 2003. "The Effect of Information on Product Quality: Evidence from Restaurant Hygiene Grade Cards," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 118(2), pages 409-451.
- Cardell, N. Scott, 1997. "Variance Components Structures for the Extreme-Value and Logistic Distributions with Application to Models of Heterogeneity," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, vol. 13(02), pages 185-213, April.
- David Dranove & Daniel Kessler & Mark McClellan & Mark Satterthwaite, 2002.
"Is More Information Better? The Effects of 'Report Cards' on Health Care Providers,"
NBER Working Papers
8697, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- David Dranove & Daniel Kessler & Mark McClellan & Mark Satterthwaite, 2003. "Is More Information Better? The Effects of "Report Cards" on Health Care Providers," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(3), pages 555-588, June.
- Town, Robert & Liu, Su, 2003. " The Welfare Impact of Medicare HMOs," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 34(4), pages 719-36, Winter.
- 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.
- George J. Stigler, 1961. "The Economics of Information," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 69, pages 213.
- Daniel A. Ackerberg, 2003. "Advertising, learning, and consumer choice in experience good markets: an empirical examination," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 44(3), pages 1007-1040, 08.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:11420. 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: ()
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.