Informal payments in developing countries' public health sector
AbstractIn China and some other developing countries' public health sectors, many patients give their doctors a payment outside the official channel before a major treatment. This secret payment has been documented as informal payment in the literature. We argue that the fundamental cause for informal payments is that patients have more information about doctors' skill than the government does. The price, set by the government, for services offered by doctors cannot fully differentiate patients' various needs. As a consequence, informal payment rises as a tool for patients to compete for the skillful doctor. We study the welfare implications of different policies that can potentially be used to regulate such payments. Patient heterogeneity plays a central role in welfare implications of different policies: when patients' willingness-to-pay differs a lot, informal payments should be allowed and when it differs little, informal payments should be banned. Also we show that selling the right to choose physicians publicly always improves social welfare.
Download InfoIf 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.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 5279.
Date of creation: 11 Oct 2007
Date of revision:
informal payments; public health sector; welfare; efficiency;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health
- O17 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Formal and Informal Sectors; Shadow Economy; Institutional Arrangements
- H44 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Publicly Provided Goods: Mixed Markets
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2007-10-20 (All new papers)
- NEP-DEV-2007-10-20 (Development)
- NEP-HEA-2007-10-20 (Health Economics)
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.:
- Acemoglu, D. & Verdier, T., 1996.
"Property Rights, Corruption and the Allocation of Talent: A General Equilibrium Approach,"
DELTA Working Papers
96-12, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
- Acemoglu, Daron & Verdier, Thierry, 1998. "Property Rights, Corruption and the Allocation of Talent: A General Equilibrium Approach," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 108(450), pages 1381-1403, September.
- Acemoglu, Daron & Verdier, Thierry, 1996. "Property Rights, Corruption and the Allocation of Talent: A General Equilibrium Approach," CEPR Discussion Papers 1494, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Acemoglu, D. & Verdier, T., 1996. "Property Rights, Corruption and the Allocation of Talent: A General Equilibrium Approach," Working papers 96-5, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
- Grossman, G.M. & Helpman, E., 1992.
"Protection for Sale,"
21-92, Tel Aviv.
- Grossman, Gene & Helpman, Elhanan, 1993. "Protection for Sale," CEPR Discussion Papers 827, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Gene M. Grossman & Elhanan Helpman, 1992. "Protection For Sale," NBER Working Papers 4149, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Grossman, G.M. & Helpman, E., 1992. "Protection for Sale," Papers 162, Princeton, Woodrow Wilson School - Public and International Affairs.
- Paula González, 2004. "Should physicians' dual practice be limited? An incentive approach," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 13(6), pages 505-524.
- Arye L. Hillman & John G. Riley, 1989.
"Politically Contestable Rents And Transfers,"
Economics and Politics,
Wiley Blackwell, vol. 1(1), pages 17-39, 03.
- Pranab Bardhan, 1997. "Corruption and Development: A Review of Issues," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(3), pages 1320-1346, September.
- Andrei Shleifer & Robert Vishny, 1992.
"Pervasive Shortages under Socialism,"
RAND Journal of Economics,
The RAND Corporation, vol. 23(2), pages 237-246, Summer.
- Bernheim, B Douglas & Whinston, Michael D, 1986. "Menu Auctions, Resource Allocation, and Economic Influence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 101(1), pages 1-31, February.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Ekkehart Schlicht).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.