The income health care utilization gradient: Is it causal?

Jacob Nielsen Arendt (Foredragsholder)

Aktivitet: Foredrag og mundtlige bidragForedrag og præsentationer i privat eller offentlig virksomhed


The combat of inequities in health care utilization is highly prioritized in many developed countries. Yet, most of the economic literature on health care inequities has addressed how to test for inequity and to construct summary measures of income-related inequality. Little is known about the causal relation between income and health care utilization. This study uses highly reliable Danish register data observed over a ten years period to infer the causal impact of disposable income on General Practitioner visits. Using Poisson regressions to adjust for socio-demographics and health indicators, we observe a significant effect of income on General Practitioner visits. However, it has a clear kink in the sense that those with very low income make least use of the health care system. We use various identification schemes to infer whether these income-related differences are causal. This includes fixed effect Poisson estimates and local tax changes as instrumental variable for income. Furthermore, income transfer reforms in 2003 that lowered income transfers for certain low income groups are also applied to identify the impact of income.
Periode23. jun. 2008
BegivenhedstitelAmerican Society of Health Economics: null
PlaceringDurham, USA