Hospital Consolidation: Investigating Causes and Consequences

Vol. IX, No. 2
May 2006

A new project from the University of Minnesota and The University of Pennsylvania offers fresh insights into the relationship between hospital consolidation, the managed care environment, and consumer welfare. Robert Town; Ph.D.,Douglas Wholey Ph.D., and Roger Feldman Ph.D., in collaboration with Lawson R. Burns Ph.D., conducted two related analyses,the first examining the relationship between managed care and hospital consolidation, and the second examining the impact of hospital consolidation on consumers. Their research reveals that hospital consolidation has a distinct impact on consumer interests, increasing both HMO premiums in the most competitive markets and the number of uninsured.1 These findings are the result of the first systematic examination of the consequences of hospital consolidation for consumers.