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Effects of Recent Carrot-and-Stick Policy Initiatives on Private Health Insurance Coverage in Australia

  • ALFONS PALANGKARAYA
  • JONGSAY YONG

The Australian government implemented a sequence of new policies during 1997-2000 and raised the take-up rate of private health insurance (PHI) by 35 per cent. Because they were implemented sequentially, their individual effectiveness is not quite clear. We isolate the effects of Lifetime Health Cover (LHC) introduced at the last stage of the sequence using a counterfactual analysis of PHI demand with and without the new policies. Unlike earlier studies which attributed the bulk of the increase in PHI coverage to LHC, we find LHC may only account for as low as 42 per cent and no more than 75 per cent of the increase. Copyright 2005 The Economic Society Of Australia.

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Article provided by The Economic Society of Australia in its journal The Economic Record.

Volume (Year): 81 (2005)
Issue (Month): 254 (09)
Pages: 262-272

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Handle: RePEc:bla:ecorec:v:81:y:2005:i:254:p:262-272
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  1. H.E. Frech Iii & Sandra Hopkins & Garry Macdonald, 2003. "The Australian Private Health Insurance Boom: Was It Subsidies Or Liberalised Regulation?," Economic Papers, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 22(1), pages 58-64, 03.
  2. �ngel Marcos Vera-Hernández, 1999. "Duplicate coverage and demand for health care. The case of Catalonia," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 8(7), pages 579-598.
  3. Alfons Palangkaraya & Jongsay Yong, 2004. "How Effective is Lifetime Health Cover in Raising Private Health Insurance Coverage in Australia? An Assessment Using Regression Discontinuity," Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series wp2004n33, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne.
  4. Cameron, A. Colin & Trivedi, Pravin K., 1991. "The role of income and health risk in the choice of health insurance : Evidence from Australia," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(1), pages 1-28, June.
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