IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

Aging, health expenditure, proximity to death, and income in Finland

  • HÄKKINEN, UNTO
  • MARTIKAINEN, PEKKA
  • NORO, ANJA
  • NIHTILÄ, ELINA
  • PELTOLA, MIKKO
Registered author(s):

    This study revisits the debate on the ‘red herring’, i.e. the claim that population aging will not have a significant impact on health care expenditure (HCE), using a Finnish data set. We decompose HCE into several components and include both survivors and deceased individuals into the analyses. We also compare the predictions of health expenditure based on a model that takes into account the proximity to death with the predictions of a naïve model, which includes only age and gender and their interactions. We extend our analysis to include income as an explanatory variable. According to our results, total expenditure on health care and care of elderly people increases with age but the relationship is not as clear as is usually assumed when a naïve model is used in health expenditure projections. Among individuals not in long-term care, we found a clear positive relationship between expenditure and age only for health centre and psychiatric inpatient care. In somatic care and prescribed drugs, the expenditure clearly decreased with age among deceased individuals. Our results emphasize that even in the future, health care expenditure might be driven more by changes in the propensity to move into long-term care and medical technology than age and gender alone, as often claimed in public discussion. We do not find any strong positive associations between income and expenditure for most non-LTC categories of health care utilization. Income was positively related to expenditure on prescribed medicines, in which cost-sharing between the state and the individual is relatively high. Overall, our results indicate that the future expenditure is more likely to be determined by health policy actions than inevitable trends in the demographic composition of the population.

    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://journals.cambridge.org/abstract_S174413310800443X
    File Function: link to article abstract page
    Download Restriction: no

    Article provided by Cambridge University Press in its journal Health Economics, Policy and Law.

    Volume (Year): 3 (2008)
    Issue (Month): 02 (April)
    Pages: 165-195

    as
    in new window

    Handle: RePEc:cup:hecopl:v:3:y:2008:i:02:p:165-195_00
    Contact details of provider: Postal: Cambridge University Press, UPH, Shaftesbury Road, Cambridge CB2 8BS UK
    Web page: http://journals.cambridge.org/jid_HEP
    Email:

    No references listed on IDEAS
    You can help add them by filling out this form.

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

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cup:hecopl:v:3:y:2008:i:02:p:165-195_00. 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: (Keith Waters)

    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.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.