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Socioeconomic inequalities in drug utilization for Sweden: Evidence from linked survey and register data

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  • Nordin, Martin
  • Dackehag, Margareta
  • Gerdtham, Ulf-G.

Abstract

This study analyzes the socioeconomic gradient in drug utilization. We use The Swedish Prescribed Drug Register, merged with the Survey of Living Conditions (the ULF), and the study sample consists of 8138 individuals. We find a positive education gradient (but no income gradient) in drug utilization, after controlling for health indicators. Whereas high-educated men use a larger number of drugs, high-educated women use both a larger number of drugs and more expensive drugs. For males, but not as clearly for females, we find that the education gradient is weaker for more health-related drugs but stronger for more expensive drugs. We conclude that the main reason for the education gradient in drug utilization is doctors' behaviour rather than compliance with medication and affordability of drugs.

Suggested Citation

  • Nordin, Martin & Dackehag, Margareta & Gerdtham, Ulf-G., 2013. "Socioeconomic inequalities in drug utilization for Sweden: Evidence from linked survey and register data," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 77(C), pages 106-117.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:socmed:v:77:y:2013:i:c:p:106-117
    DOI: 10.1016/j.socscimed.2012.11.013
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. repec:spr:eujhec:v:19:y:2018:i:3:d:10.1007_s10198-017-0895-5 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Anell, Anders & Dackehag , Margareta & Dietrichson, Jens, 2016. "Does Risk-Adjusted Payment Influence Primary Care Providers' Decision on Where to Set Up Practices?," Working Papers 2016:24, Lund University, Department of Economics.
    3. Anna Baranowska-Rataj & Xavier de Luna & Anneli Ivarsson, 2016. "Does the number of siblings affect health in midlife? Evidence from the Swedish Prescribed Drug Register," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 35(43), pages 1259-1302, November.
    4. repec:spr:patien:v:10:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1007_s40271-016-0201-0 is not listed on IDEAS

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