Based mostly on a examine by Frankovic and Kuhn (2022), the reply is each. Nonetheless, the worth of elevated innovation–as measured by means of longevity positive aspects–greater than offset inefficiencies from overspending. Particularly, the authors use an overlapping generations mannequin the place people should buy medical health insurance and medical progress will depend on well being care sector return on funding. The authors calibrate their mannequin utilizing longevity information from the Human Mortality Database from 19650 by means of 2005, earnings information from the Present Inhabitants Survey (CPS) and well being care spending information from the Nationwide Heart for Well being Statistics (NCHS). This timeframe is related as 1965 was the yr Medicare was applied within the US.
Utilizing this system, the authors discover that:
…extra intensive medical health insurance accounts for a big share of the rise in US well being spending but in addition boosts the speed of medical progress. A welfare evaluation exhibits that whereas the subsidization of well being care by means of medical health insurance creates extreme well being care spending, the positive aspects in life expectancy caused by induced medical progress greater than compensate for this.
Total, elevated ranges of medical health insurance lower consumption as extra money is spent on well being care. On the similar time, capital–significantly capital invested in R&D–will increase as medical health insurance will increase returns on funding as extra sick sufferers are capable of afford therapy. The authors notice that:
One rationalization for why the advantages from medical progress more and more outweigh the loss from ethical hazard lies with the continued progress of revenue: So long as per capita consumption is growing over time, people are inclined to assign an growing worth to life (Corridor and Jones, 2007, Chen et al., 2021). This argument extends to the evaluation of ethical hazard, the place people are keen to tolerate an growing distortion from well being insurance coverage in trade for a rise in lifetime, so long as this solely slows down however doesn’t reverse consumption progress.
The authors additionally notice that medical costs improve over time because of the Baumol price illness; particularly the joint affect of productiveness progress within the last items sectors and medical progress itself result in greater costs.
You may learn the total paper right here.
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