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The Effects of Co-payments within Drug Reimbursement Programs

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  • Jeremiah Hurley
  • Nancy Arbuthnot Johnson

Abstract

Prescription drug expenditures are one of the fastest rising components of provincial health care spending. One of the primary responses of provincial governments to rising drug expenditures has been to introduce or increase beneficiary co-payment requirements. This paper examines the evidence regarding the effects of co-payments on drug program expenditures, the appropriateness of drug utilization, and the efficiency with which prescription drug markets operate. Although drug co-payments can reduce drug program expenditures, they can only do so by compromising other program goals. Alternative policies are then discussed that may help contain costs without compromising, and in some instances even improving, drug therapy.

Suggested Citation

  • Jeremiah Hurley & Nancy Arbuthnot Johnson, 1991. "The Effects of Co-payments within Drug Reimbursement Programs," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 17(4), pages 473-489, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpp:issued:v:17:y:1991:i:4:p:473-489
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    Cited by:

    1. Magnezi, Racheli & Weiss, Yossi & Cohen, Yossi & Shmueli, Amir, 2007. "Development of a capitation scale for IDF career soldiers in Israel," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 80(3), pages 459-464, March.
    2. Atella, Vincenzo, 2000. "Drug cost containment policies in Italy: are they really effective in the long-run?: The case of minimum reference price," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 50(3), pages 197-218, January.
    3. Lundberg, Lena & Johannesson, Magnus & Isacson, Dag G. L. & Borgquist, Lars, 1998. "Effects of user charges on the use of prescription medicines in different socio-economic groups," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 44(2), pages 123-134, May.
    4. Begoña Álvarez, 2002. "The use of medicines in a comparative study across European interview-based surveys," Working Papers 0209, Universidade de Vigo, Departamento de Economía Aplicada.
    5. Paul Grootendorst & Mitchell Levine, 2002. "Do Drug Plans Matter? Effects of Drug Plan Eligibility on Drug Use Among the Elderly, Social Assistance Recipients and the General Population," Quantitative Studies in Economics and Population Research Reports 372, McMaster University.

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