NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

NBER Working Papers and Publications by Ralph Bradley

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Working Papers and Chapters and Reporter Articles

December 2013The Simultaneous Effects of Obesity, Insurance Choice, and Medical Visit Choice on Healthcare Costs
with Colin Baker
in Measuring and Modeling Health Care Costs, Ana Aizcorbe, Colin Baker, Ernst Berndt, and David Cutler, editors
Several studies have estimated the increases in health care spending from rising obesity prevalence, but they have not accounted for the endogeneity of insurance. This study recognizes that there are unobserved heterogeneous factors that guide choices on health insurance, body mass index (BMI) and care-seeking behavior, with the idea that neither health insurance nor BMI should be treated as exogenous when estimating a cost function. Also, this study uses a Tobit model to account for corner solutions in which individuals have a medical expenditure of zero. We find that obesity raises medical costs by $430.33, and that a 10% reduction in the BMI of each obese person would only lower costs by $45.28. The obesity elasticity with respect to cost is only .0115%.
December 2009Can A Disease-Based Price Index Improve the Estimation of the Medical Consumer Price Index?
with Xue Song, William D. Marder, Robert Houchens, Jonathan E. Conklin
in Price Index Concepts and Measurement, W. Erwin Diewert, John S. Greenlees and Charles R. Hulten, editors
January 2003Price Index Estimation Using Price Imputation for Unsold Items
in Scanner Data and Price Indexes, Robert C. Feenstra and Matthew D. Shapiro, editors

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