Demand for and Regulation of Cardiac Services
Efforts to regionalize cardiac services can increase access costs for patients. This study quantifies this trade off by estimating the effects of changes in the regulation of hospital services on treatments and outcomes. A demand model for surgery services is specified in which heart attack victims form expectations of the need for and productivity of surgery in their choice of hospital and treatment. The results indicate that mortality is relatively insensitive to moderate changes in policy: changes in travel costs and volume offset one another. Despite similar health outcomes, the competing policies have different implications for taxpayers.
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