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SIEPR’s David Chan wins 2023 ASHEcon Medal

The American Society of Health Economists is recognizing David Chan for his significant contributions to health economics research.

David Chan, a senior fellow at the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research (SIEPR) and associate professor of health policy at the Stanford School of Medicine, has been awarded the prestigious 2023 ASHEcon Medal for his impact to date on the field of health economics.

The medal is given each year by The American Society of Health Economists (ASHEcon) to early-career health economists whose research is making a difference in the field. Recipients must be 40 years-old or younger or have finished their core education within the previous 10 years.

Chan doesn’t study health insurance markets, unlike a lot of economists in his field. Rather, he focuses on the delivery of patient care at the point of diagnosis and treatment to analyze impacts on costs and health outcomes. Among other insights, he has shed new light on the role of physician skill in diagnosing patients and shown that emergency room doctors are far more likely to order tests, which can be done quickly but often at a high price, at the end of their shifts. More recently, he found that health care costs are higher and patients in the ER fare worse when they are treated by nurse practitioners rather than physicians.

Chan joined Stanford faculty in 2013, the same year he earned a PhD in economics from MIT. A graduate of UCLA’s David Geffen School of Medicine, he also serves in various roles at the Department of Veteran Affairs: staff physician, investigator, and co-director of its Quality Enhancement Research Initiative (QUERI).

Chan joins other SIEPR scholars who were awarded the ASHEcon Medal in past years: Heidi Williams and Neale Mahoney (2021); Mark Duggan (2010) and Laurence Baker (2008).

ASHEcon also awarded the Willard G. Manning Memorial Award for the Best Research in Health Econometrics to Amanda Kowalski, a professor of applied economics and public policy at the University of Michigan. Kowalski was a visiting associate professor in SIEPR’s Young Scholars program between 2015 to 2016.

In addition to the ASHEcon awards, the American Economic Association awarded the 2023 John Bates Clark Medal to Gabriel Zucman, who was a SIEPR Young Scholar in 2017. Zucman is now a professor of economics at the Paris School of Economics and École Normale Supérieure – PSL and an associate professor of economics at the University of California, Berkeley.

The John Bates Clark Medal recognizes early career American economists under the age of 40. Past winners include SIEPR senior fellows Susan Athey, Matthew Gentzkow, Jonathan Levin, and the late Kenneth Arrow — as well as former SIEPR Visiting Fellow Melissa Dell; former SIEPR visitors Emmanuel Saez, Oleg Itskhoki, Amy Finkelstein and Lawrence Summers; and former SIEPR senior fellows Raj Chetty and Dave Donaldson.