Private Obstetrical Care Yields Slightly Better Outcomes in Military Health System

Public and Private Options in Practice: The Military Health System

Recent debates on healthcare reform, including in military and veterans’ healthcare, have focused on public versus private provision of services. This study uses unique data on childbirth claims in the Military Health System (MHS) to compare the impact of receiving obstetrical care on military bases versus off-base. The findings indicate that off-base care, although slightly more resource-intensive, leads to notably better outcomes, suggesting potential efficiency gains from privatization of care.

Frakes, Michael D., Jonathan Gruber, and Timothy Justicz. 2023. “Public and Private Options in Practice: The Military Health System.” American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, 15 (4): 37-74.


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