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The welfare effects of public drug insurance

Author: Darius Lakdawalla; Neeraj Sood; National Bureau of Economic Research.
Publisher: Cambridge, MA : National Bureau of Economic Research, ©2007.
Series: Working paper series (National Bureau of Economic Research), working paper no. 13501.
Edition/Format:   eBook : Document : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
Rewarding inventors with inefficient monopoly power has long been regarded as the price of encouraging innovation. Public prescription drug insurance escapes that trade-off and achieves an elusive goal: lowering static deadweight loss, while simultaneously encouraging dynamic investments in innovation. As a result of this feature, the public provision of drug insurance can be welfare-improving, even for risk-neutral  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Statistics
Additional Physical Format: Print version:
Lakdawalla, Darius.
Welfare effects of public drug insurance.
Cambridge, MA : National Bureau of Economic Research, ©2007
(DLC) 2007616632
(OCoLC)181374568
Material Type: Document, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Darius Lakdawalla; Neeraj Sood; National Bureau of Economic Research.
OCLC Number: 894934100
Notes: "October 2007."
Reproduction Notes: Electronic reproduction. [S.l.] : HathiTrust Digital Library, 2011. MiAaHDL
Description: 1 online resource (35, 4, 2 pages).
Details: Master and use copy. Digital master created according to Benchmark for Faithful Digital Reproductions of Monographs and Serials, Version 1. Digital Library Federation, December 2002.
Series Title: Working paper series (National Bureau of Economic Research), working paper no. 13501.
Responsibility: Darius Lakdawalla, Neeraj Sood.

Abstract:

Rewarding inventors with inefficient monopoly power has long been regarded as the price of encouraging innovation. Public prescription drug insurance escapes that trade-off and achieves an elusive goal: lowering static deadweight loss, while simultaneously encouraging dynamic investments in innovation. As a result of this feature, the public provision of drug insurance can be welfare-improving, even for risk-neutral and purely self-interested consumers. In spite of its relatively low benefit levels, the Medicare Part D benefit generate $3.5 billion of annual static deadweight loss reduction, and at least $2.8 billion of annual value from extra innovation. These two components alone cover 87% of the social cost of publicly financing the benefit. The analysis of static and dynamic efficiency also has implications for policies complementary to a drug benefit: in the context of public monopsony power, some degree of price-negotiation by the government is always strictly welfare-improving, but this should often be coupled with extensions in patent length.

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