Jean M Mitchell




McCourt School of Public Policy
General profile



+1 202-687-7038





Jean M.Mitchell is an economist and Professor in the McCourt School of Public Policy. Her areas of expertise are health economics, health services research and applied econometrics. Nearly all of Dr. Mitchell's research is supported by external grant funding. She has served as the principal investigator or co-investigator on several grants funded by either the federal government or non profit organizations.

Dr. Mitchell has published more than 90 peer reviewed articles in leading economics, health services research and medical journals. Her published research includes the following topics: the effects of physician self-referral arrangements on utilization and costs of health services, effects of managed care insurance on access to care for specific medical procedures; effects of managed care on physicians’ practice styles, hours of work, earnings and satisfaction with medicine as a career; physicians’ responses to Medicare fee reductions; effects of physical and mental health on labor supply and earnings; effects of a Medicaid waiver for persons with AIDS on monthly expenditures, use of services and survival; access to medical and dental care along with use of medical and dental services for children with special health care needs enrolled in managed care versus fee-for-service; effects of physician ownership of either specialty hospitals or ambulatory surgery centers on frequency of use (referral rates) for specific inpatient and outpatient surgical procedures; effects of physician ownership of ancillary services (anatomic pathology, physical therapy and radiation therapy) on frequency of use and outcomes.

In the early 1990s, Dr. Mitchell served as the principal researcher of a large scale study to evaluate the impact of physician self-referral arrangements on use of services, costs, access and quality of health care in Florida. This study was mandated and funded by the Florida legislature. Her findings, which were published in leading peer review journals such at the New England Journal of Medicine and the Journal of the American Medical Association, had a major impact on public policy. In response to her study and some other published research, Congress passed a federal law (known as Stark II) which prohibits physicians from referring Medicare and Medicaid patients to health care facilities in which the physician has an ownership interest. At least 24 states enacted similar legislation that prohibits the practice of physician self-referral for both public and privately insured patients.

Dr. Mitchell's recently published work has focused on evaluating exceptions in the federal physician self-referral law. Much of her recent publications have examined the effects of physician self-referral arrangements that are permissible under the in-office ancillary services exception.

Dr. Mitchell is the principal investigator for three ongoing projects supported by grant funding; two of these were initiated in September 2016. The first titled "Evaluation of Ambulatory Surgery Center Specialization, Costs and Payment Rates" is funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. The second ongoing project "Assessing the Value of Aggressive Treatment of Low-Risk Prostate Cancer" is a three year grant also funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. A third project "Use of and Survival Following Contralateral Prophylactic Mastectomy versus other Surgical Treatments for Unilateral Breast Cancer" is supported by internal grant funding from Georgetown University. In addition, Dr. Mitchell serves as co-investigator for the project "Effects of Alzheimer's Disease in the Pre-Diagnosis Period on Financial Outcomes". This project awarded to the RAND Corporation is funded by the Department of Defense.

Dr. Mitchell is an avid, dedicated long distance runner. She has started and finished 18 marathons, including qualifying for and running the Boston marathon 5 times. Jean is married to Gregory de Lissovoy and they have a wonderful son Ryan who was born in 2001.


  • Ph.D. (1986) Vanderbilt University, Economics
  • M.A. (1985) Vanderbilt University, Economics
  • B.S. (1981) Wake Forest University, Mathematical Economics