Assistant Professor for Health Services Management
School of Business and Economics Institute of Management (IFM)
Friedrich-Alexander University of Erlangen-Nuremberg
Harkness Project Title: Consumer Comprehension of Publicly Reported Hospital Quality Data
Mentor: Paul D. Cleary, Ph.D. (Yale School of Public Health)
Co-Mentor: Mark J. Schlesinger, Ph.D. (Yale School of Public Health)
Placement: Yale School of Public Health
Biography at time of Harkness Fellowship: Martin Emmert, Ph.D., M.Sc., a 2014–15 German Harkness Fellow in Health Care Policy and Practice, is assistant professor for health services management at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg. Prior to this, Emmert was a postdoctoral research assistant in health management at the university. His research primarily focuses on public reporting on the quality of care of health care providers, specifically the development of public reporting instruments and physician-rating websites. Emmert has authored six books on the German health care system, pay for performance in health care, and health care management, in addition to several book chapters and over 25 peer-reviewed journal publications in journals such as Health Policy, European Journal of Health Economics, and Journal of Medical Internet Research. He received a Ph.D. summa cum laude from the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg.
Project: Although much effort has been put into increasing the publicly reported information regarding the quality of care of healthcare providers, patients have been slow to take advantage of these comparative reports in making their provider choices. To increase the impact of public reporting, the inclusion of narrative comments is supposed to be one possible approach by moving persons closer to actual experience and making the meaning of information more readily available. However, so far, little research has assessed the importance and impact of such comments on hospital choice making. It furthermore remains unclear how to present the narrative comments along with quantitative measures of hospital quality. Dr. Emmert’s research project aims to propose a design which will allow for answering whether and how to present narrative comments on hospital report cards. In detail, it will: 1) determine the impact of narrative comments on hospital choice making; 2) analyze whether positive or negative comments have the greater potential for steering patients; 3) evaluate the context-dependent impact of the comments on the selection behavior; and 4) answer whether to present narrative comments with composite scores or detailed performance scores.