Austin B. Frakt, PhD
Associate Professor
Boston University School of Public Health
Dept of Health Law, Policy & Management

PhD, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Austin Frakt, Ph.D., is a Health Economist and Director of the Partnered Evidence-based Policy Resource Center at the Boston VA Healthcare System. He is also an Associate Professor affiliated with the Boston University School of Public Health; a Visiting Associate Professor with the Department of Health Policy and Management at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health; and an Adjunct Senior Fellow, Leonard Davis Institute, University of Pennsylvania.
Dr. Frakt is an Editor-in-Chief and a primary author of the evidence-based health policy blog The Incidental Economist. He is a regular contributor on health policy topics to The New York Times’ The Upshot and the Journal of the American Medical Association Forum.
Dr. Frakt is a senior associate editor for Health Services Research and serves on the editorial board of the American Journal of Managed Care. He is chair of the AcademyHealth Translation and Dissemination Institute Advisory Committee and is a member of the New England Comparative Effectiveness Public Advisory Council.
Dr. Frakt has conducted research studies funded by the Department of Veterans Affairs, The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, The Commonwealth Fund, and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. His work has been published in The New England Journal of Medicine, Journal of the American Medical Association, Milbank Quarterly, Health Care Financing Review, Health Affairs, Health Economics, Health Services Research, International Journal of Health Care Finance and Economics, Journal of Health Politics, Policy and Law, among other journals.
Dr. Frakt received his Ph.D. from the Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Department of Massachusetts Institute of Technology in statistical and applied mathematics. He also received a master’s degree from MIT, and his bachelor’s degree from Cornell University in Applied and Engineering Physics.

Visiting Associate Professor
Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

Detection of Unethical Substance Use Disorder Treatment Providers
11/02/2018 - 03/31/2021 (Co-PI)
PI: Melissa Garrido, PhD
Laura and John Arnold Foundation

Translation and Dissemination of Health Policy-Relevant Research
04/20/2018 - 03/31/2021 (PI)
Laura and John Arnold Foundation

Health Economics and Health Services Research Planning and Support
05/01/2016 - 04/30/2020 (SP Co-PI of Sub-Project / SP)
PI: David Henderson, MD
VA Boston Healthcare System

Personnel agreement for research service of Austin Frakt
05/01/2013 - 04/30/2014 (PI)
Boston VA Research Institute, Inc. AcademyHealth

Personnel agreement for research services of Austin Frakt
12/01/2011 - 11/30/2012 (PI)
Boston VA Research Institute, Inc. Comm of Pennsylvania

Yr Title Project-Sub Proj Pubs
Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Faculty can login to make corrections and additions.

  1. Burke LG, Khullar D, Zheng J, Frakt AB, Orav EJ, Jha AK. Comparison of Costs of Care for Medicare Patients Hospitalized in Teaching and Nonteaching Hospitals. JAMA Netw Open. 2019 Jun 05; 2(6):e195229.View Related Profiles. PMID: 31173121.
  2. Yuan Y, Thomas KS, Frakt AB, Pizer SD, Garrido MM. Users Of Veteran-Directed Care And Other Purchased Care Have Similar Hospital Use And Costs Over Time. Health Aff (Millwood). 2019 Jun; 38(6):1037-1045.View Related Profiles. PMID: 31158026.
  3. Adelberg M, Frakt A, Polsky D, Strollo MK. Improving provider directory accuracy: can machine-readable directories help? Am J Manag Care. 2019 May; 25(5):241-245. PMID: 31120718.
  4. Frakt A, Mehrotra A. What Type of Price Transparency Do We Need in Health Care? Ann Intern Med. 2019 Apr 02. PMID: 30934087.
  5. Feyman Y, Figueroa JF, Polsky DE, Adelberg M, Frakt A. Primary Care Physician Networks In Medicare Advantage. Health Aff (Millwood). 2019 Apr; 38(4):537-544. PMID: 30933595.
  6. Figueroa JF, Blumenthal DM, Feyman Y, Frakt AB, Turchin A, Doros G, Gao Q, Song Y, Joynt Maddox KE. Differences in Management of Coronary Artery Disease in Patients With Medicare Advantage vs Traditional Fee-for-Service Medicare Among Cardiology Practices. JAMA Cardiol. 2019 Feb 20.View Related Profiles. PMID: 30785590.
  7. Pearson E, Frakt A. Medical Scribes, Productivity, and Satisfaction. JAMA. 2019 Feb 19; 321(7):635-636. PMID: 30778589.
  8. Frakt A, Sachs R. A Smarter Way to Provide Epinephrine at School. JAMA Pediatr. 2019 Feb 01; 173(2):130-132. PMID: 30575853.
  9. Minegishi T, Frakt AB, Garrido MM, Gellad WF, Hausmann LRM, Lewis ET, Pizer SD, Trafton JA, Oliva EM. Randomized program evaluation of the Veterans Health Administration Stratification Tool for Opioid Risk Mitigation (STORM): A research and clinical operations partnership to examine effectiveness. Subst Abus. 2019; 40(1):14-19.View Related Profiles. PMID: 30620691.
  10. Pizer SD, Frakt AB, Sheetz K, Clancy C. Testing Novel Payment and Delivery Approaches Through the Veterans Health Administration's New Center for Innovation. Ann Intern Med. 2018 Dec 25.View Related Profiles. PMID: 30583295.
Showing 10 of 132 results. Show More

This graph shows the total number of publications by year, by first, middle/unknown, or last author.

Bar chart showing 132 publications over 18 distinct years, with a maximum of 25 publications in 2010

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Recent (within 3 months)

Does Your Education Level Affect Your Health?

New York Times 6/3/2019

Why Your Doctor’s White Coat Can Be a Threat to Your Health

New York Times 4/29/2019


Hearing aids can help many seniors. Medicare should cover them

STAT 2/27/2019

Giant Strides in World Health, but It Could Be So Much Better

The New York Times 2/4/2019

Why a ‘Passive’ Health Approach Can Produce the Most Action

The New York Times 1/7/2019

The Medicare-for-all paradox

VOX 12/14/2018

A Sense of Alarm as Rural Hospitals Keep Closing

The New York Times 10/29/2018

How a CVS-Aetna Merger Might Actually Put Money in Your Pocket

Intellignecer 10/11/2018

Can Paying for a Health Problem as a Whole, Not Piece by Piece, Save Medicare Money?

The New York Times 9/17/2018

Although we’re running low on doctors, the solution may not be more doctors

Stat 9/12/2018

A Little-Known Windfall for Some Hospitals, Now Facing Big Cuts

The New York Times 8/29/2018

The Large Hidden Costs of Medicare’s Prescription Drug Program

The New York Times 8/13/2018

Shopping for Health Care Simply Doesn’t Work. So What Might?

The New York Times 7/30/2018

Hidden From View: The Astonishingly High Administrative Costs of U.S. Health Care

The New York Times 7/16/2018

Viewpoint: How peer-to-peer healthcare can ease patient anxiety

Viewpoint 7/9/2018

Sometimes Patients Simply Need Other Patients

The New York Times 7/9/2018

America Has A Health Care Gap, And Insurance Alone Won’t Fix It

The Huffington Post 6/23/2018

Can Low-Intensity Care Solve High Health Care Costs?

The New York Times 6/11/2018

Viewpoint: Sicker hip replacement patients benefit the most from teaching hospitals

Becker’s Spine Review 6/11/2018

Reagan, Deregulation and America’s Exceptional Rise in Health Care Costs

The New York Times 6/4/2018

Would Americans Accept Putting Health Care on a Budget?

The New York Times 4/16/2018

340B is a well-intentioned drug discount program gone awry

STAT News 3/22/2018

Medicare Doesn’t Equal Dental Care. That Can Be a Big Problem

The New York Times 3/19/2018

Viewpoint: Hospitals don't want an all-payer system

Becker's Hospital Review 3/19/2018

What to make of Amazon and Warren Buffett’s mystery health care project

VOX 1/31/2018

The Connection Between Retiring Early and Living Longer

The New York Times 1/29/2018

A Memory Shortcut, With a Little Help From Friends

The New York Times 1/8/2018

Why the U.S. Spends So Much More Than Other Nations on Health Care

The New York Times 1/2/2018
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