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Robert Graboyes

Robert Graboyes

Robert Graboyes is a senior research fellow and healthcare scholar with the Mercatus Center at George Mason University and is the author of the study “Fortress and Frontier in American Health Care.” He earned his PhD in economics from Columbia University. An award-winning teacher, Graboyes holds teaching positions at Virginia Commonwealth University and the University of Virginia.

Articles by Robert Graboyes

Proposed Legislation Increases Openness in and Access to Healthcare in Maine

12 days ago

Good morning, Chairs Sanborn and Tepler and members of the committee. I am delighted to testify on Maine’s proposed healthcare legislation—LD 1194 and LD 1007. My name is Robert Graboyes, and I am a senior research fellow at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, where my work focuses on how America can make healthcare as innovative in the next 30 years as information technology was in the past 30 years.
In commenting on these two bills (and others), I offer the following takeaways:
LD 1194 and LD 1007 open multiple pathways for saving lives and improving health.
Reimbursement methodologies will be a significant challenge for policymakers going forward.
Increased options will reduce costs, but that doesn’t guarantee lower spending on healthcare.
How patients and providers will

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Telemedicine Is Evolving Rapidly; Legal Definitions and Reimbursement Methods Need to Evolve with It

April 12, 2021

Good afternoon, Chair Fields, Vice Chair Ginal, and members of the committee. I am grateful for the invitation to testify on Colorado’s proposed telemedicine legislation (HB21-1190). My name is Robert Graboyes, and I am a senior research fellow at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, where my work focuses on the question of how America can make healthcare as innovative in the next 30 years as information technology was in the past 30 years.
In commenting on HB21-1190, I offer the following takeaways:
Telemedicine will lower costs and reach underserved communities. Telemedicine is poised to provide better health for more people at lower cost, year after year, particularly for communities that are currently underserved. This is especially true following the enormous increase in

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Telehealth as Commodity

March 25, 2021

The COVID-driven telehealth explosion has led to some instances of fraud, but the market will iron those out in the long run, and the benefits far outweigh the risks. Read more at InsideSources.

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Telehealth: Eyes on Arizona

February 25, 2021

Arizona is at the forefront of regulatory openness and innovation in health care. A new telehealth bill is the latest example of this trend. Other states would do well to follow Arizona’s lead. Read more at InsideSources.

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Proposed Telehealth Legislation Is a Positive Step

February 1, 2021

Good afternoon Chair Osbourne, Vice Chair Cobb, and members of the Committee on Health and Human Services. I am grateful for the invitation to testify on Arizona’s proposed telehealth legislation (HB 2454). My name is Robert Graboyes, and I am a senior research fellow at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, where my work focuses on the question of how America can make healthcare as innovative in the next 30 years as information technology was in the past 30 years.
Today, I offer the following takeaways:
Telehealth stands poised to provide better health for more people at lower cost, year after year, particularly for communities that are currently underserved.
Flexibility in reimbursement and other features are essential for America to take advantage of the benefits of

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No, Canada

October 20, 2020

Government price-fixing isn’t the quick solution to high drug prices that its Pennsylvanian proponents imagine it to be. Read more at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

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The Longed-For Values of Gentler Times

September 21, 2020

Much electronic ink already has been spilled since the passing on Friday of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. And while some of the comments and the commentary, from both the left and right, have been inspiring, much of what’s been posted—from social media to mainstream media—has not done justice to what Justice Ginsburg lived and stood for. 
Last week, in my syndicated newspaper column, I urged civility and respect for, or at least quiet tolerance of, those whose politics differ from one’s own. This year is part of a dyspeptic stretch in American political life, with profound deficits of humanity and humility across the political spectrum. It’s easy to point fingers at professional politicians, but the blame lies as much with ordinary citizens, who elect those politicians and

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COVID-19: A Month Later

August 24, 2020

The pandemic is a tragedy, but it has spurred some much needed innovation in American health care. Read more at InsideSources.

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Communications, From Kovacs to COVID

August 24, 2020

With college classes moving online, Robert Graboyes offers a few lessons in audience engagement from comedian (and television pioneer) Ernie Kovacs. Read more at InsideSources.

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COVID-19 as a ‘Trolley Problem’

August 24, 2020

Policy makers are forced to make an impossible decision: end the lockdown and let COVID-19 deaths spike, or continue the lockdown and let people die from other causes. Read more at InsideSources.

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Blue Skies, Chirping Birds and COVID-19

August 24, 2020

COVID-19 is giving Americans a "great pause" and a taste of environmental recovery, but Robert Graboyes urges readers not to ignore the benefits of our advanced economy. Read more at InsideSources.

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A Perfect (Tweet)storm: Conjectures on a Post-COVID World

April 9, 2020

British Prime Minister Harold Macmillan, as the story goes, was asked what would determine the course of his government’s actions. His response? “Events, dear boy. Events.”
Whether or not Macmillan actually said those words is disputed. What is not in dispute is that COVID-19 has made 2020 the Year of Events. The world that existed in late 2019 is gone and shall not pass this way again.
“Look for the silver lining, whene’er a cloud appears in the sky,” begins a celebrated track by singer/trumpeter Chet Baker, much of whose life was shrouded in dark clouds. For some of us—the lucky ones—the plague’s silver lining is a chance to slow down and think; to appreciate the gifts we have and to ponder where we go from here.
It’s my great fortune that someone pays me to think about the future. Just

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Quick Reads: Virginians and the Mathematics of Contagion

April 6, 2020

On Friday, April 3, at 11:53 pm, I lay in bed, and my cellphone buzzed. A treasured friend from elementary school had a question on the dynamics of a pandemic. The question warranted some deep thought, so I stared at the darkened ceiling for a while, searching for a suitable answer. Her question was sparked by some comments from my Mercatus colleague, Chuck Blahous, that I had posted on Facebook. Chuck had noted that the US COVID-19 mortality rate was inexplicably low compared with many other countries: 2.95 percent, as opposed to 12.75 percent for Italy, 9.75 percent for Spain, and 9.93 percent for the Netherlands.
Chuck said, “it’s clear that there are many other countries whose healthcare systems lack the adaptability, supplies, and resources to handle a crisis.” He hedged his

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Quick Reads: COVID-19 and the Transformation of American Healthcare

March 23, 2020

Two short weeks and several lifetimes ago, our world was a simpler place. In seven years at the Mercatus Center, my work has focused on one question: “how do we bring better health to more people at lower cost, year after year?” The answer, scattered across hundreds of papers, essays, speeches, and interviews, has been: stop obsessing over the particulars of health insurance and start sweeping away healthcare’s bureaucratic and self-indulgent barriers to innovation as rapidly as possible.
Proposals have included speeding up FDA procedures, scrapping certificate-of-need regulations, relaxing professional licensure requirements, jump-starting telemedicine, borrowing lean manufacturing from automakers, and imitating the raucous experimentation of information technology.
Until two or three

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Mercatus Scholars' Most Influential Books: Robert Graboyes

February 21, 2020

In commemoration of the 40th anniversary of the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, we’ve asked some of our scholars to share the books that have been most influential or formative in the development of their analytical approach and worldview.
From existential engineering to the Salem witch trials to Argentine magical realism, our scholars have drawn inspiration from diverse and dramatic wellsprings of intellectual thought.

Read on for more about why and how the books we will discuss have influenced our scholars’ approaches to policy and philosophy, and what lessons other readers may draw from these works.

These five books profoundly influenced my thinking, teaching, and writing. In very different ways, each celebrates individualism and scorns centralized decision-making.
War

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