Forum Session

The Geography of Medicare: Explaining Differences in Payment and Costs
July 30, 2003


Nora Super


This meeting examined the sources of variation in Medicare payment and costs across different geographic areas and different sites of care. Speakers discussed the extent to which variations can be attributed to Medicare payment policies, providers’ practice patterns, and beneficiaries’ propensity to use care. Policy options to address disparities in rural and other low-spending areas, as well as efforts to reward quality and efficiency through payment, also were explored.


Elliott Fisher, MD, MPH, Professor of Medicine, Center for the Evaluative Clinical Sciences, Dartmouth Medical School; Nancy-Ann DeParle, JD, Senior Advisor, JPMorgan Partners, LLC; Michael Kitchell, MD, Neurologist, McFarland Clinic, Ames, Iowa; Robert Galvin, MD, Director of Global Health Care, General Electric Company; Pat Bousliman, Senate Finance Committee; Madeleine Smith, House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Health

Slides from the presentations by Dr. Fisher, Ms. DeParle, Dr. Kitchell, and Dr. Galvin are available for download.

Related Materials

More information available in the accompanying publication, Issue Brief No. 792.

See also a related paper by the California HealthCare Foundation, "California Medicare HMOs: Declining Benefits and Rising Costs."

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