Author ORCID Identifier

Date of Award

Spring 5-12-2023

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Dr. Jim Marton

Second Advisor

Dr. Melinda Pitts

Third Advisor

Dr. Tom Mroz

Fourth Advisor

Dr. John Gibson


While distinct in their particular theme, the following two essays all have one unified goal. Their collective goal is to provide accurate estimates for important policy topics useful for policymakers and researchers. The first essay revisits the RAND HIE using a new matching method to address the potential insurance plan endogeneity. The resulting analysis finds small changes in demand elasticity for medical care but statistically significant improvement in smoking rates at the study exit. The second essay looks at the financial health impacts of rural hospital closures.