Doctors don't make better patients
Doctors — theoretically, the best-informed patients out there — don't receive significantly more high-value care than non-doctors, according to a new National Bureau of Economic Research paper.
Why it matters: Many policies are designed based on the idea that if people have more information, they'll be better health care consumers.
- For example, this is the theory behind high-deductible insurance. One possible explanation for why it hasn't been very effective in improving patient health is because consumers aren't knowledgeable enough to steer themselves toward high-value care.
The bottom line: "These results provide a rough boundary on the extent to which additional information disclosure (beyond prevailing levels) can be expected to improve the delivery of health care in the U.S.," the authors write.