Deborah Haas-Wilson Ph.D.

Marilyn Carlson Nelson Professor of Economics
Department of Economics
Smith College
Email: Discipline: Economics Expertise: Competition / Markets

Investigator Award
Antitrust Policy and the Transformation of Health Care Markets
Award Year: 1994 This study examines antitrust policy in the context of integrated provider networks. While increasing collaboration and integration of medical providers may be consistent with the goal of reducing health care costs, antitrust laws are written to promote and protect competition, not collaboration. Drs. Haas-Wilson and Gaynor take a close look at the role of antitrust policy in ensuring pro-competitive impacts of mergers, network affiliations, joint ventures, contractual arrangements, and health insurance purchasing alliances. A conceptual framework is developed to analyze competitive effects, focusing on: 1) the social welfare impacts of changes in structure and conduct in health care markets; 2) whether changes enhance efficiency or quality, or whether they facilitate collusion and market power; and, 3) appropriate antitrust policy if these changes result in lessened competition and a significant welfare loss. The findings provide policy guidance concerning when consolidation and/or collaboration should be encouraged or prohibited.


Deborah Haas-Wilson received her B.A. in economics from the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, and her Ph.D. in economics from University of California at Berkeley.

Haas-Wilson's research focuses on competition and competition policies in health care markets.  Her articles have appeared in the Journal of Political Economy, Journal of Economic Perspectives, Journal of Law and Economics, Review of Economics and Statistics, Journal of Health Economics, and other peer-reviewed journals.  She is the author of Managed Care and Monopoly Power: The Antitrust Challenge (Harvard University Press, 2003) and co-editor of Uncertain Times: Kenneth Arrow and the Changing Economics of Health Care (Duke University Press, 2003).

Haas-Wilson works as an expert in health care antitrust, including cases involving the competitive effects of hospital mergers and commercial health insurer mergers, the effects of vertical consolidation in health care markets, and the competitive effects of physician mergers and networks.  She has served as an expert on antitrust issues to the Federal Trade Commission (see for example, the decision in the matter of Evanston Northwestern Healthcare Corporation (2005)), the Massachusetts Attorney General, and numerous private entities.  In 2013, she testified in Federal District Court in Idaho on behalf of plaintiffs, in an antitrust lawsuit alleging competitive harm from St. Luke’s Health System’s acquisition of a large independent physician practice.