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Economics of self-medication: theory and evidence

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Author Info

  • Fwu-Ranq Chang

    (Department of Economics, Wylie Hall, Indiana University, Bloomington, USA)

  • Pravin K. Trivedi

    (Department of Economics, Wylie Hall, Indiana University, Bloomington, USA)

Abstract

A pervasive phenomenon in developing countries is that self-prescribed medications are purchased from drug vendors without professional supervision. In this article we develop a model of self-medicating behavior of a utility-maximizing consumer who balances the benefits and risks of self-medication. The empirical investigation focuses on the role of income and health insurance on the use of self-medication. Our data are from the World Bank's Living Standards Measurement Survey of Vietnam, 1997-1998. The results show that self-medication is an inferior good at high income levels and a normal good at low income levels, and it shows a strong and robust negative insurance effect. Copyright © 2003 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1002/hec.841
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. in its journal Health Economics.

Volume (Year): 12 (2003)
Issue (Month): 9 ()
Pages: 721-739

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Handle: RePEc:wly:hlthec:v:12:y:2003:i:9:p:721-739

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Web page: http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/cgi-bin/jhome/5749

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References

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  1. Rosen, Sherwin, 1974. "Hedonic Prices and Implicit Markets: Product Differentiation in Pure Competition," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(1), pages 34-55, Jan.-Feb..
  2. Cameron, A C & P. K. Trivedi & Frank Milne & J. Piggott, 1988. "A Microeconometric Model of the Demand for Health Care and Health Insurance in Australia," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 55(1), pages 85-106, January.
  3. Mullahy, John, 1998. "Much ado about two: reconsidering retransformation and the two-part model in health econometrics," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 247-281, June.
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Cited by:
  1. Eddy van Doorslaer, 2007. "Paying Out-of-Pocket for Health Care in Asia: Catastrophic and Poverty Impact," Working Papers id:823, eSocialSciences.
  2. Trivedi, Pravin K., 2002. "Patterns of health care utilization in Vietnam : analysis of 1997-98 Vietnam Living Standards Survey Data," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2775, The World Bank.
  3. Eddy van Doorslaer & Owen O'Donnell & Ravindra P. Rannan-Eliya & Aparnaa Somanathan & Shiva Raj Adhikari & Charu C. Garg & Deni Harbianto & Alejandro N. Herrin & Mohammed Nazmul Huq & Shamsia Ibragimo, 2007. "Catastrophic payments for health care in Asia," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 16(11), pages 1159-1184.
  4. Pablo Gottret & George J. Schieber & Hugh R. Waters, 2008. "Good Practices in Health Financing : Lessons from Reforms in Low and Middle-Income Countries," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 6442, January.
  5. Pagan, Jose A. & Ross, Sara & Yau, Jeffrey & Polsky, Daniel, 2006. "Self-medication and health insurance coverage in Mexico," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 75(2), pages 170-177, January.
  6. Faden, Laura & Vialle-Valentin, Catherine & Ross-Degnan, Dennis & Wagner, Anita, 2011. "Active pharmaceutical management strategies of health insurance systems to improve cost-effective use of medicines in low- and middle-income countries: A systematic review of current evidence," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 100(2), pages 134-143.
  7. Martine Visser & Frikkie Booysen, 2004. "Determinants of the choice of health care facility utilised by individuals in HIV/AIDS-affected households in the Free State province of South Africa," SALDRU/CSSR Working Papers 087, Southern Africa Labour and Development Research Unit, University of Cape Town.
  8. repec:asi:ajoerj:2013:p:738-751 is not listed on IDEAS
  9. Midori Matsushima & Hiroyuki Yamada, 2013. "Public Health Insurance in Vietnam towards Universal Coverage: Identifying the challenges, issues, and problems in its design and organizational practices," OSIPP Discussion Paper 13E003, Osaka School of International Public Policy, Osaka University.

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