Medicare Balance Billing Restrictions: Impacts on Physicians and Beneficiaries
Recent publicity about Â“concierge physiciansÂ” has raised concerns about the potential adverse effects of allowing physicians to bill their patients for fees that are above normal copayments and insurance reimbursements. In particular, consumers who are unable to afford the additional costs of such physicians are concerned that their access to highquality medical care could be compromised. Such concerns in the context of Medicare led states and the federal government, beginning in the late 1980s, to restrict the ability of physicians to Â“balance billÂ” beneficiaries for charges in excess of the copayment and reimbursement amounts approved by Medicare. In this paper, I provide empirical evidence that this policy change resulted in an 8% reduction in out-of-pocket medical expenditures by elderly households. In spite of the change in marginal reimbursement to physicians, however, I find little evidence that the restrictions affected quantity or quality of care.
|Date of creation:||23 Sep 2004|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Phone: (541) 346-4661
Fax: (541) 346-1243
Web page: http://economics.uoregon.edu/
More information through EDIRC
References listed on IDEAS
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.:
- Mitchell, Janet B. & Cromwell, Jerry, 1982. "Physician behavior under the medicare assignment option," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 1(3), pages 245-264, December.
- Glazer, Jacob & Glazer, Jacob & McGuire, Thomas G., 1993. "Should physicians be permitted to 'balance bill' patients?," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 239-258, October.
- Yelowitz, Aaron S., 2000. "Public policy and health insurance choices of the elderly: evidence from the medicare buy-in program," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(3), pages 301-324, November.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ore:uoecwp:2004-13. 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: (Bill Harbaugh)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.