The Health Economics Program in the Department of Health Policy and Management at the Boston University School of Public Health seeks funding to support continuation of the highly successful Annual Health Economics Conference (AHEC) to be held October 23-24, 2009 at the Boston University School of Public Health. The AHEC conference uses a small conference format for rigorous presentation and discussion of health economics research, with special attention to its application to policy. In this context, the aims of this conference are: (1) to advance the policy applicability of health economics by exploring theoretical issues with high potential for application to real-world health settings;(2) to improve the policy relevance of empirical health economics by fostering research that emphasizes the study of important current policy questions using rigorous methods;and (3) to develop the next generation of health economic scholars by placing promising junior economists with high-profile senior economists in an intensive 1.5-day, small group setting. Over the past 19 years, AHEC has been hosted by most of the major universities that offer advanced degree programs and have major funded research programs in health economics. The unique nature of each conference focus combined with the prestige of each university has ensured exceptionally high quality papers and serious interactions among conference participants. This year the conference will build upon past success by (1) retaining the core structure and tradition of AHEC, with extensive discussion of leading-edge, policy-relevant research in health economics and (2) addressing the current changing health care reform environment by including sessions that focus on two critical issues in the cost, productivity, organization, and market forces of health care that are of current importance for public policy and AHRQ: 1) the economics of value, quality, and cost, and 2) the economics of markets, concentration, and organization. David Hyman, Professor of Law at the University of Illinois and Director, Epstein Program in Health Law and Policy, will deliver a keynote address with a user perspective on translating and using health economics research to impact health policy, especially focusing on markets, concentration, and organization. Dr. Hyman has both an M.D. and J.D. and was Special Counsel to the Federal Trade Commission for three years.
The Annual Health Economics Conference brings together the leaders in the field of Health Economics to discuss and to present on issues that have a direct effect on public health policy in the US. The 20th Annual Health Economics conference hopes to build upon the rich tradition established by the preceding Annual Health Economics Conferences.