Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy
This doctoral dissertation consists of five essays in applied microeconomics with focus on healthcare economics and health services research. The first three are innovative being the first in the health economics literature to investigate different distinct aspects of modeling the economic contents of U.S. physical therapy production using the generalized flexible translog (GTL) dual cost model and iterative seemingly unrelated regression estimation (ISURE) technique.Using the higher frequency (bi-weekly) panel dataset, pair-wise input factor relationships of three distinct labor types are examined for the fast growing industry, which has up to now lacked current economic investigation due to data paucity. Pair-wise factor relationships (isoquant curvature) were investigated for three competing conceptual measures of the elasticity of substitution (own- and cross-price, Allen-Uzawa, Morishima, and shadow), as well as scale economies at constant output. Second, three Pythagorean means (arithmetic, harmonic and geometric) were investigated for appropriateness as the mean expansion point for the GTL model. Finally, statistical tests were conducted indicating that pediatric and adult clinics operate with distinct underlying technologies.The final two essays incorporate health economics and health services, research in the study of patient care decision, as it relates to Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) orders, and the impact of the decision on health outcomes. The DNR papers, using Probit and propensity score research methodologies, are the first to utilize a large, comprehensive patient discharge dataset to provide insights into the potential implications for healthcare policy, patient awareness and care, most notably for the rapidly aging baby-boomer population.
dissertation or thesis originally submitted to the local University of Memphis Electronic Theses & dissertation (ETD) Repository.
Lubiani, Gregory Gill, "Five Essays on the Economics of Health and Health Care" (2012). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 463.