Anand Acharya will receive a Senate Medal at the 2016 fall Convocation ceremony on November 12. This medal is awarded to graduating students at Carleton University for outstanding academic achievement at the doctoral level. Anand’s thesis is in the health econometrics field, a rather new field which combines health economics and bio-statistics. Economic models pertaining to public, private and bio-medical policy issues require an interdisciplinary approach, hence this emerging field. Anand’s work focuses on using health indices that are routinely collected in hospitals now, to predict hospital length of stay which is an important determinant of costs. Available health or mortality risk indices are subject to an important bias when used to predict length of stay. This is because unobserved heterogeneity which acts as a missing variable with measurement error, ends up confounding inference. Anand’s contribution is the first to emphasize the severity and consequences of this problem which seems to have escaped notice in practical work, and to provide solutions that can easily be adapted by hospitals in Canada and worldwide. His results are new to economics, econometrics and to the medical field. Anand is already involved in a Canada wide CIHR-backed study, led by a team of physicians and a few economists. He joined Carleton as an adjunct research professor this fall.
Lynda Khalaf and Marcel Voia