Anupam Bapu Jena, MD, PhD, is the Joseph P. Newhouse Professor of Health Care Policy at Harvard Medical School and a physician in the Department of Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital. He is also a faculty research fellow at the National Bureau of Economic Research. As an economist and physician, Dr. Jena’s research involves several areas of health economics and policy including the use of natural experiments in health care, the economics of physician behavior and the physician workforce, medical malpractice, the economics of health care productivity, and the economics of medical innovation.
We talk about the natural experiments that he uses in economics to move medicine forward, what the pandemic has taught him about how people make their health decisions. We also talk about the limited impact that value-based care and price transparency have had and how this is unlikely to change any time soon.
Dr. Jena graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He received his MD and PhD in Economics from the University of Chicago and completed his residency in internal medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital. He is the host of the Freakonomics, MD podcast, which explores the “hidden side of healthcare.” Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner, the authors of Freakonomics have only given the Freakonomics name to someone once before in the Freakonomics movie, which demonstrates how much esteem they have for Dr. Jena.