Does Seeing the Doctor More Often Keep You Out of the Hospital?

36 Pages Posted: 28 Jul 2012 Last revised: 20 May 2021

See all articles by Robert Kaestner

Robert Kaestner

University of Chicago; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Anthony T. Lo Sasso

DePaul University - Department of Economics

Date Written: July 2012

Abstract

By exploiting a unique health insurance benefit design, we provide novel evidence on the causal association between outpatient and inpatient care. Our results indicate that greater outpatient spending was associated with more hospital admissions: a $100 increase in outpatient spending was associated with a 2.7% increase in the probability of having an inpatient event and a 4.6% increase in inpatient spending among enrollees in our sample. Moreover, we present evidence that the increase in hospital admissions associated with greater outpatient spending was for conditions in which it is plausible to argue that the physician and patient could exercise discretion.

Suggested Citation

Kaestner, Robert and Lo Sasso, Anthony T., Does Seeing the Doctor More Often Keep You Out of the Hospital? (July 2012). NBER Working Paper No. w18255, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2119010

Robert Kaestner (Contact Author)

University of Chicago ( email )

1155 East 60th Street
Chicago, IL 60637
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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New York, NY 10004
United States

Anthony T. Lo Sasso

DePaul University - Department of Economics ( email )

1 E. Jackson Blvd.
Chicago, IL 60604
United States

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