Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login

Asymmetric Information and the Demand for Voluntary Health Insurance in Europe

Contents:

Author Info

  • Kristian Bolin
  • Daniel Hedblom
  • Anna Lindgren
  • Bjorn Lindgren

Abstract

Several past studies have found health risk to be negatively correlated with the probability of voluntary health insurance. This is contrary to what one would expect from standard textbook models of adverse selection and moral hazard. The two most common explanations to the counter-intuitive result are either (1) that risk-aversion is correlated with health — i.e. that healthier individuals are also more risk-averse — or (2) that insurers are able to discriminate among customers based on observable health-risk characteristics. We revisited these arguments, using data from the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE). Self-assessed health served as an indicator of risk: better health, lower risk. We did, indeed, observe a negative correlation between risk and insurance but found no evidence of heterogeneous risk-preferences as an explanation to our finding.

Download Info

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w15689.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 15689.

as in new window
Length:
Date of creation: Jan 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:15689

Note: HE
Contact details of provider:
Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
Phone: 617-868-3900
Email:
Web page: http://www.nber.org
More information through EDIRC

Related research

Keywords:

Find related papers by JEL classification:

This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

References

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
as in new window
  1. Amy Finkelstein & Kathleen McGarry, 2003. "Private Information and its Effect on Market Equilibrium: New Evidence from Long-Term Care Insurance," NBER Working Papers 9957, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Pauly, Mark V, 1986. "Taxation, Health Insurance, and Market Failure in the Medical Economy," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 24(2), pages 629-75, June.
  3. Kristian Bolin & Anna Lindgren & Björn Lindgren & Petter Lundborg, 2009. "Utilisation of physician services in the 50+ population: the relative importance of individual versus institutional factors in 10 European countries," International Journal of Health Care Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 9(1), pages 83-112, March.
  4. Ettner, Susan L., 1997. "Adverse selection and the purchase of Medigap insurance by the elderly," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(5), pages 543-562, October.
  5. Jürgen Maurer, 2008. "Who has a clue to preventing the flu? Unravelling supply and demand effects on the take-up of influenza vaccinations," MEA discussion paper series 08170, Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (MEA) at the Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy.
  6. Hendrik Jürges, 2009. "Healthy Minds In Healthy Bodies: An International Comparison Of Education-Related Inequality In Physical Health Among Older Adults," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 56(3), pages 296-320, 07.
  7. Amir Shmueli, 2001. "The effect of health on acute care supplemental insurance ownership: an empirical analysis," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 10(4), pages 341-350.
  8. Crossley, Thomas F. & Kennedy, Steven, 2002. "The reliability of self-assessed health status," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(4), pages 643-658, July.
  9. Gerdtham, U. -G. & Johannesson, M. & Lundberg, L. & Isacson, D., 1999. "A note on validating Wagstaff and van Doorslaer's health measure in the analysis of inequalities in health," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 117-124, January.
  10. Amy Finkelstein & James Poterba, 2004. "Adverse Selection in Insurance Markets: Policyholder Evidence from the U.K. Annuity Market," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(1), pages 183-208, February.
  11. Pierre-Andre Chiappori & Bernard Salanie, 2000. "Testing for Asymmetric Information in Insurance Markets," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(1), pages 56-78, February.
  12. Ravallion, Martin & Lokshin, Michael, 2002. "Rich and powerful? Subjective power and welfare in Russia," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2854, The World Bank.
  13. Denise Doiron & Glenn Jones & Elizabeth Savage, 2008. "Healthy, wealthy and insured? The role of self-assessed health in the demand for private health insurance," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 17(3), pages 317-334.
  14. Rothschild, Michael & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1976. "Equilibrium in Competitive Insurance Markets: An Essay on the Economics of Imperfect Information," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 90(4), pages 630-49, November.
  15. John Cawley & Tomas Philipson, 1997. "An Empirical Examination of Information Barriers to Trade inInsurance," University of Chicago - George G. Stigler Center for Study of Economy and State 132, Chicago - Center for Study of Economy and State.
  16. Philip M. Clarke & Chris Ryan, 2006. "Self-reported health: reliability and consequences for health inequality measurement," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(6), pages 645-652.
  17. Liljas, Bengt, 1998. "The demand for health with uncertainty and insurance," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 153-170, April.
  18. Eric Bonsang, 2008. "Does Informal Care from Children to their Elderly Parents Substitute for Formal Care in Europe?," CREPP Working Papers 0801, Centre de Recherche en Economie Publique et de la Population (CREPP) (Research Center on Public and Population Economics) HEC-Management School, University of Liège.
  19. K. Bolin & B. Lindgren & P. Lundborg, 2007. "Your Next of Kin or your Own Career? Caring and Working among the 50+ of Europe," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 07-032/3, Tinbergen Institute.
  20. Luigi Siciliani & Rossella Verzulli, 2009. "Waiting times and socioeconomic status among elderly Europeans: evidence from SHARE," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 18(11), pages 1295-1306.
  21. Michael Grossman, 1972. "The Demand for Health: A Theoretical and Empirical Investigation," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number gros72-1, May.
  22. Smith, James P, 1998. "Socioeconomic Status and Health," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(2), pages 192-96, May.
  23. Grossman, Michael, 1972. "On the Concept of Health Capital and the Demand for Health," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 80(2), pages 223-55, March-Apr.
  24. Chang, Fwu-Ranq, 1996. "Uncertainty and investment in health," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(3), pages 369-376, June.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

Citations

Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
as in new window

Cited by:
  1. Omar Paccagnella & Vincenzo Rebba & Guglielmo Weber, 2013. "VOLUNTARY PRIVATE HEALTH INSURANCE AMONG THE OVER 50s IN EUROPE," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 22(3), pages 289-315, 03.
  2. Karlsson, Martin & Klohn, Florian & Rickayzen, Ben, 2012. "Are the Dimensions of Private Information More Multiple than Expected? Information Asymmetries in the Market of Supplementary Private Health Insurance in England," Darmstadt Discussion Papers in Economics 57826, Darmstadt Technical University, Department of Business Administration, Economics and Law, Institute of Economics (VWL).
  3. Lee, Yong-Woo, 2012. "Asymmetric information and the demand for private health insurance in Korea," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 116(3), pages 284-287.

Lists

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

Statistics

Access and download statistics

Corrections

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:15689. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ().

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.