Comment on two recent studies of hospital payment rates

June 5, 2019

In a recent analysis for the American Hospital Association, Monica Noether and Ben Stearns review two recent studies on hospital payment rates and discuss several issues with the underlying data used by the studies’ authors, as well as flaws in the inferences the authors draw from their analysis. Noether and Stearns argue that, since neither study attempts to identify the various factors that drive differences in commercial prices and hospital margins that they measure, they should not imply any policy implications. As such, attempts to make this variation transparent are unlikely to accurately inform employers in their purchasing decisions.

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