Too Much Ado About Two-Part Models and Transformation?

Comparing Methods of Modeling Medicare Expenditures

Published in: Journal of Health Economics, v. 23, no. 3, May 2004, p. 525-542

Posted on RAND.org on January 01, 2004

by Melinda Beeuwkes Buntin, Alan M. Zaslavsky

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Many methods for modeling skewed health care cost and use data have been suggested in the literature. This paper compares the performance of eight alternative estimators, including OLS and GLM estimators and one- and two-part models, in predicting Medicare costs. It finds that four of the alternatives produce very similar results in practice. It then suggests an efficient method for researchers to use when selecting estimators of health care costs.

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