R. Tamara Konetzka

University of Chicago
5841 S. Maryland Ave.,
MC 2007, Rm. W-255
Chicago, IL 60637-1447

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Institutional Affiliation: University of Chicago

NBER Working Papers and Publications

May 2017Are Recessions Good for Staffing in Nursing Homes?
with Karen B. Lasater, Edward C. Norton, Rachel M. Werner: w23402
The quality and cost of care in nursing homes depend critically on the number and types of nurses. Recent research suggests that the nursing supply adjusts to macroeconomic conditions. However, prior work has failed to consider the effect of macroeconomic conditions on demand for nurses through the effect on revenues. We test how county-level unemployment rates affect direct-care staffing rates in nursing homes using California data. We exploit the wide variation in the unemployment rates across counties and over time in 2005–2012. We also test whether there are heterogeneous effects of unemployment rates by facility size, staffing level, and profit status. We find that as unemployment rates increase, staffing by registered nurses (RNs) decreases but staffing by licensed practical nu...

Published: R. Tamara Konetzka & Karen B. Lasater & Edward C. Norton & Rachel M. Werner, 2018. "Are Recessions Good for Staffing in Nursing Homes?," American Journal of Health Economics, vol 4(4), pages 411-432. citation courtesy of

May 2016What is the Marginal Benefit of Payment-Induced Family Care?
with Norma B. Coe, Jing Guo, Courtney Harold Van Houtven: w22249
Research on informal and formal long-term care has centered almost solely on costs; to date, there has been very little attention paid to the benefits. This study exploits the randomization in the Cash and Counseling Demonstration and Evaluation program and instrumental variable techniques to gain causal estimates of the effect of family involvement in home-based care on health care utilization and health outcomes. We find that family involvement significantly decreases Medicaid utilization. Importantly, we find family involvement significantly lowers the likelihood of urinary tract infections, respiratory infections, and bedsores, suggesting that the lower utilization is due to better health outcomes.
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