NBER Program Project on Satellite National Health Accounts

With funding through a five-year program project grant from the National Institute on Aging (P01 AG031098), the goal of this project is to measure systematically and jointly both the benefits and the costs of medical care, and then compare the two. At the broadest level, we have two specific aims:

- to measure population health alongside medical spending, and
- to consider the costs and benefits of past changes in medical technology and a range of interventions designed to improve the productivity of the medical system.

These goals involve five specific research components: (1) tracking population health, including both mortality and quality of life, and decomposing health trends by symptoms and impairments, and underlying diseases; (2) tracking medical spending, with an understanding of spending growth at the disease level, and the cost of particular services; (3), (4), and (5) undertaking detailed study of the costs and benefits of medical interventions in the care of three common conditions: cardiovascular disease (including both heart disease and stroke); cancer (lung, colorectal, and breast); and depression.