IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/nbr/nberwo/8147.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

The Benefits and Costs of Newer Drugs: Evidence from the 1996 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey

Author

Listed:
  • Frank R. Lichtenberg

Abstract

The nation's spending for prescription drugs has grown dramatically in recent years. Previous studies have shown that the replacement of older drugs by newer, more expensive, drugs is the single most important reason for this increase, but they did not measure how much of the difference between new and old drug prices reflects changes in quality as better, newer drugs replace older, less effective medications. In this paper we analyzed prescribed medicine event-level data (linked to person- and condition-level data) from the 1996 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS) to provide evidence about the effect of drug age on mortality morbidity, and total medical expenditure, controlling for a number of characteristics of the individual and the event. (Previous researchers have hypothesized that differences in treatment patterns across individuals and areas may occur because of physicians' uncertainty and ignorance over the best medical practice.) The MEPS data enable us to control for many important attributes of the individual, condition, and prescription that influence outcomes and non-drug expenditures and that may be correlated with drug age. These include sex, age, education, race, income, insurance status, who paid for the drug, the condition for which the drug was prescribed, how long the person has had the condition, and the number of medical conditions reported by the person. Indeed, the fact that many individuals in the sample have both multiple medical conditions and multiple prescriptions means that we can control for all individual characteristics both observed and unobserved by including individual effects'. The results provide strong support for the hypothesis that the replacement of older by newer drugs results in reductions in mortality morbidity, and total medical expenditure. Although the mortality rate in this sample is quite low making it difficult to detect any...

Suggested Citation

  • Frank R. Lichtenberg, 2001. "The Benefits and Costs of Newer Drugs: Evidence from the 1996 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey," NBER Working Papers 8147, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:8147
    Note: HC PR
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w8147.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Klette, Tor Jakob & Griliches, Zvi, 2000. "Empirical Patterns of Firm Growth and R&D Investment: A Quality Ladder Model Interpretation," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 110(463), pages 363-387, April.
    2. Aghion, Philippe & Howitt, Peter, 1992. "A Model of Growth through Creative Destruction," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(2), pages 323-351, March.
    3. Lichtenberg, Frank R, 1996. "Do (More and Better) Drugs Keep People Out of Hospitals?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 384-388, May.
    4. David M. Cutler & Mark McClellan & Joseph P. Newhouse & Dahlia Remler, 1996. "Are Medical Prices Declining?," NBER Working Papers 5750, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Segerstrom, Paul S & Anant, T C A & Dinopoulos, Elias, 1990. "A Schumpeterian Model of the Product Life Cycle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(5), pages 1077-1091, December.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

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


    Cited by:

    1. Lee Branstetter & Chirantan Chatterjee & Matthew J. Higgins, 2014. "Starving (or Fattening) the Golden Goose?: Generic Entry and the Incentives for Early-Stage Pharmaceutical Innovation," NBER Working Papers 20532, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Scherer, F.M., 2010. "Pharmaceutical Innovation," Handbook of the Economics of Innovation, Elsevier.
    3. James W. Hughes & Michael J. Moore & Edward A. Snyder, 2002. ""Napsterizing" Pharmaceuticals: Access, Innovation, and Consumer Welfare," NBER Working Papers 9229, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • I1 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health
    • L65 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Manufacturing - - - Chemicals; Rubber; Drugs; Biotechnology; Plastics

    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:nbr:nberwo:8147. 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: () or (Joanne Lustig). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/nberrus.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.