USC School of Gerontology
Los Angeles, CA 90089
Institutional Affiliation: University of Southern California
NBER Working Papers and Publications
|September 2019||Does Medicare Coverage Improve Cancer Detection and Mortality Outcomes?|
with Rebecca Mary Myerson, Dana Goldman, Darius N. Lakdawalla: w26292
Medicare is a large government health insurance program in the United States which covers about 60 million people. This paper analyzes the effects of Medicare insurance on health for a group of people in urgent need of medical care: people with cancer. We used a regression discontinuity design to assess impacts of near-universal Medicare insurance at age 65 on cancer detection and outcomes, using population-based cancer registries and vital statistics data. Our analysis focused on the three tumor sites for which screening is recommended both before and after age 65: breast, colorectal, and lung cancer. At age 65, cancer detection increased by 72 per 100,000 population among women and 33 per 100,000 population among men; cancer mortality also decreased by 9 per 100,000 population for women ...