Rising health spending, new medical technology and the Baumol effect
AbstractThis paper estimates the Baumol effect in health spending, using a panel data set of OECD countries. Health expenditure as a share of GDP rises in most OECD countries. One of the possible causes is the so-called Baumol effect, which may arise if labour productivity in health care grows more slowly than in the overall economy. If in addition demand for health care is inelastic, then the share of health spending in GDP will rise over time. We do indeed find that one percentage growth in economy-wide labour productivity is associated with about 0.5 percent growth in real health spending. This implies that economy-wide productivity growth leads to higher real health spending.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis in its series CPB Discussion Paper with number 115.
Date of creation: Dec 2008
Date of revision:
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- H51 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Government Expenditures and Health
- I11 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Analysis of Health Care Markets
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