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Equity in health care use among older people in the UK: an analysis of panel data


  • Sara Allin
  • Cristina Masseria
  • Elias Mossialos


This article uses panel data to investigate the extent of income-related inequity in the likelihood of visiting a General Practitioner (GP), specialist, dentist and hospital among individuals aged 65 years and over in the UK. The probability of accessing health care is predicted with separate random effects probit panel models using data from the British Household Panel Survey (BHPS) for the period 1998 to 2006. We use well-established methods based on the concept of the concentration curve to compare the cumulative distribution of health care utilization with the cumulative distribution of the population ranked by income. The results find evidence for inequity in specialist and dental care, but only slight inequity for GP care and not significant inequity in hospital admissions. Levels of inequity are highest for specialist and dental care, even when users of the private sector are excluded from analyses. The Mobility Index (MI) is also used to compare short- and long-run estimates of inequities and show that upwardly income mobile individuals contribute to inequity in the long run.

Suggested Citation

  • Sara Allin & Cristina Masseria & Elias Mossialos, 2011. "Equity in health care use among older people in the UK: an analysis of panel data," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 43(18), pages 2229-2239.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:applec:v:43:y:2011:i:18:p:2229-2239
    DOI: 10.1080/00036840903196621

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. repec:eee:joecag:v:6:y:2015:i:c:p:24-43 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Costa-Font, Joan & Hernández-Quevedo, Cristina, 2012. "Measuring inequalities in health: What do we know? What do we need to know?," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 106(2), pages 195-206.

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