NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

The Quality of Medical Care, Behavioral Risk Factors, and Longevity Growth

Frank R. Lichtenberg

NBER Working Paper No. 15068
Issued in June 2009
NBER Program(s):   EFG   HC

The rate of increase of longevity has varied considerably across U.S. states since 1991. This paper examines the effect of the quality of medical care, behavioral risk factors (obesity, smoking, and AIDS incidence), and other variables (education, income, and health insurance coverage) on life expectancy and medical expenditure using longitudinal state-level data. We examine the effects of three different measures of the quality of medical care. The first is the average quality of diagnostic imaging procedures, defined as the fraction of procedures that are advanced procedures. The second is the average quality of practicing physicians, defined as the fraction of physicians that were trained at top-ranked medical schools. The third is the mean vintage (FDA approval year) of outpatient and inpatient prescription drugs. Life expectancy increased more rapidly in states where (1) the fraction of Medicare diagnostic imaging procedures that were advanced procedures increased more rapidly; (2) the vintage of self- and provider-administered drugs increased more rapidly; and (3) the quality of medical schools previously attended by physicians increased more rapidly. States with larger increases in the quality of diagnostic procedures, drugs, and physicians did not have larger increases in per capita medical expenditure.

download in pdf format
   (612 K)

email paper

The NBER Bulletin on Aging and Health provides summaries of publications like this.  You can sign up to receive the NBER Bulletin on Aging and Health by email.

This paper is available as PDF (612 K) or via email.

Machine-readable bibliographic record - MARC, RIS, BibTeX

Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w15068

Published: Frank Lichtenberg, 2011. "The quality of medical care, behavioral risk factors, and longevity growth," International Journal of Health Care Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 11(1), pages 1-34, March. citation courtesy of

Users who downloaded this paper also downloaded these:
Lichtenberg w15880 Has medical innovation reduced cancer mortality?
Lichtenberg w16051 Are Increasing 5-Year Survival Rates Evidence of Success Against Cancer? A reexamination using data from the U.S. and Australia
Lichtenberg w14008 Have Newer Cardiovascular Drugs Reduced Hospitalization? Evidence From Longitudinal Country-Level Data on 20 OECD Countries, 1995-2003
Preston and Ho w15213 Low Life Expectancy in the United States: Is the Health Care System at Fault?
Fogel w14361 Forecasting the Cost of U.S. Health Care in 2040
 
Publications
Activities
Meetings
NBER Videos
Data
People
About

Support
National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138; 617-868-3900; email: info@nber.org

Contact Us