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Consolidation in the dental industry: a closer look at dental payers and providers

Kamyar Nasseh (), John R. Bowblis, Marko Vujicic and Sean Shenghsiu Huang
Additional contact information
Kamyar Nasseh: American Dental Association
John R. Bowblis: Miami University
Marko Vujicic: American Dental Association
Sean Shenghsiu Huang: Georgetown University

International Journal of Health Economics and Management, 2020, vol. 20, issue 2, No 2, 145-162

Abstract: Abstract We examine the effect of commercial dental insurance concentration on the size of dental practices, the decision of dentists to own a practice, and the choice of dentists to work at a dental management service organization—a type of corporate group practice that has become more prevalent in the United States in recent years. Using 2013–2015 dentist-level data from the American Dental Association, county-level data on firms and employment from the United States Census, and commercial dental insurance market concentration data from FAIR Health®, we find a modest effect of dental insurance market concentration on the size of dental practices. We also find that a higher level of commercial dental insurance market concentration is associated with a dentist’s decision not to own a practice. There is inconclusive evidence that higher levels of dental insurance market concentration impact a dentist’s decision to affiliate with a dental management service organization. Overall, our findings imply that dentists consolidate in response to increases in concentration among commercial dental insurers.

Keywords: Dental insurance; Market structure; Dental care; Consolidation (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I11 I13 L40 L44 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.1007/s10754-019-09274-x

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International Journal of Health Economics and Management is currently edited by Leemore Dafny, Robert Town, Mark Pauly, David Dranove and Pedro Pita Barros

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