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Happy Doctor Makes Happy Baby? Incentivizing Physicians Improves Quality of Prenatal Care

Vibeke Jensen ()

The Review of Economics and Statistics, 2014, vol. 96, issue 5, 838-848

Abstract: Physician-induced demand, whereby physicians alter patient treatment for personal gain, lies at the heart of concerns about publicly provided health care. However, little is known about how payment systems affect the ultimate outcome of patient health. Exploiting a unique policy induced variation in Denmark, I investigate the impact of physician payment contracts on infant health. In a difference-in-differences framework, I find that firstborn infants exposed in the womb to the care of general practitioners with capitation contracts have poorer infant health outcomes than infants exposed to fee-for-service contracts. The firstborn children of younger women primarily drive the effects.

Keywords: health care; prenatal care; child care (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I18 J13 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2014
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The Review of Economics and Statistics is currently edited by Amitabh Chandra, Olivier Coibion, Bryan S. Graham, Shachar Kariv, Amit K. Khandelwal, Asim Ijaz Khwaja, Brigitte C. Madrian and Rohini Pande

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