Ana Aizcorbe

Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA)
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Institutional Affiliation: Bureau of Economic Analysis

NBER Working Papers and Publications

March 2019Getting Smart About Phones: New Price Indexes and the Allocation of Spending Between Devices and Services Plans in Personal Consumption Expenditures
with David M. Byrne, Daniel E. Sichel: w25645
This paper addresses two measurement issues for mobile phones. First, we develop a new mobile phone price index using hedonic quality-adjusted prices for smartphones and a matched-model index for feature phones. Our index falls at an average annual rate of 17 percent during 2010-2018, close to the rate of decline in the price index used in the GDP Accounts. Given relatively flat average prices over this period, our index points to substantial quality improvement. Second, we propose a methodology to disentangle purchases of phones and wireless services when they are bundled together as part of a long-term service contract. Getting the allocation right is especially important for real PCE because the price deflators for phones and wireless services exhibit very different trends. Our ad...
February 2017Introduction to "Measuring and Modeling Health Care Costs"
with Colin Baker, Ernst R. Berndt, David Cutler
in Measuring and Modeling Health Care Costs, Ana Aizcorbe, Colin Baker, Ernst Berndt, and David Cutler, editors
Medical care costs accounts for nearly 18% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and 20% of government spending. As a country, we know a lot about where the medical dollar goes. Thirty-eight percent of medical care dollars are paid to hospitals, 31% is paid for professional services, 12% is for outpatient pharmaceuticals, and so forth. But this is not really what we value. The goal of medical care is not to poke, prod, or take pictures of our insides; rather, it is to improve our wellbeing. To really understand health care, we need to determine what it is doing for our health. Health accounting is not easy. Academics and statistical agencies have struggled with it for decades. Questions range from the mundane – how do colonoscopy prices vary across payers? – to the fundamental – to what extent i...
December 2016Attribution of Health Care Costs to Diseases: Does the Method Matter?
with Allison B. Rosen, Tina Highfill, Michael E. Chernew, Eli Liebman, Kaushik Ghosh, David M. Cutler
in Measuring and Modeling Health Care Costs, Ana Aizcorbe, Colin Baker, Ernst Berndt, and David Cutler, editors
Cost of illness (COI) studies focus on allocating health expenditures to a comprehensive set of diseases. A variety of techniques have been used to allocate spending to diseases. In this paper, we compare spending attributed to diseases using three approaches: one based on the principal diagnosis listed on each encounter’s claim, a second based on all diagnoses listed on the encounter, and a third based on decomposing a person’s total annual spending to their conditions. The study sample is large: 2.3 million commercially insured individuals under age 65. Results indicate significant differences in the allocations from the different approaches. The two claims-based encounter approaches allocate 78% of overall spending to diseases, while the person approach allocates 95% of spending to d...
October 2007The Role of Semiconductor Inputs in IT Hardware Price Decline: Computers versus Communications
with Kenneth Flamm, Anjum Khurshid
in Hard-to-Measure Goods and Services: Essays in Honor of Zvi Griliches, Ernst R. Berndt and Charles R. Hulten, editors
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