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Evaluating Effects of Tax Preferences on Health Care Spending and Federal Revenues

Author

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  • John F. Cogan
  • R. Glenn Hubbard
  • Daniel P. Kessler

Abstract

In this paper, we calculate the consequences for health spending and federal revenues of an above-the-line deduction for out-of-pocket health spending. We show how the response of spending to this expansion in the tax preference can be specified as a function of a small number of behavioral parameters that have been estimated in the existing literature. We compare our estimates to those from other researchers. And, we use our analysis to derive some implications for tax policy toward HSAs.

Suggested Citation

  • John F. Cogan & R. Glenn Hubbard & Daniel P. Kessler, 2006. "Evaluating Effects of Tax Preferences on Health Care Spending and Federal Revenues," NBER Working Papers 12733, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:12733
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Manning, Willard G, et al, 1987. "Health Insurance and the Demand for Medical Care: Evidence from a Randomized Experiment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(3), pages 251-277, June.
    2. Jack, William & Levinson, Arik & Rahardja, Sjamsu, 2006. "Employee cost-sharing and the welfare effects of flexible spending accounts," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(12), pages 2285-2301, December.
    3. David M. Cutler, 1994. "A Guide to Health Care Reform," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 8(3), pages 13-29, Summer.
    4. Jack, William & Sheiner, Louise, 1997. "Welfare-Improving Health Expenditure Subsidies," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(1), pages 206-221, March.
    5. Eichner, Matthew J, 1998. "The Demand for Medical Care: What People Pay Does Matter," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(2), pages 117-121, May.
    6. Feldstein, Martin S, 1973. "The Welfare Loss of Excess Health Insurance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(2), pages 251-280, Part I, M.
    7. Baker, Laurence C., 1997. "The effect of HMOs on fee-for-service health care expenditures: Evidence from Medicare," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(4), pages 453-481, August.
    8. Amy Finkelstein, 2005. "The Aggregate Effects of Health Insurance: Evidence from the Introduction of Medicare," NBER Working Papers 11619, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Keeler, Emmett B. & Rolph, John E., 1988. "The demand for episodes of treatment in the health insurance experiment," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(4), pages 337-367, December.
    10. Selden, Thomas M. & Moeller, John F., 2000. "Estimates of the Tax Subsidy for Employment-Related Health Insurance," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 53(n. 4), pages 877-88, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. Joseph Bankman & John Cogan & R. Glenn Hubbard & Daniel P. Kessler, 2012. "Reforming the Tax Preference for Employer Health Insurance," NBER Chapters,in: Tax Policy and the Economy, Volume 26, pages 43-58 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • H2 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue
    • H5 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies
    • I1 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health

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