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The effect of practice budgets on patient waiting times: allowing for selection bias

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  • Mark Dusheiko

    (National Primary Care Research and Development Centre, Centre for Health Economics, University of York, UK)

  • Hugh Gravelle

    (National Primary Care Research and Development Centre, Centre for Health Economics, University of York, UK)

  • Rowena Jacobs

    (Centre for Health Economics, University of York, UK)

Abstract

Under the UK fundholding scheme, general practices could elect to hold a budget to meet the costs of some types of elective surgery (chargeable admissions) for their patients. It was alleged that patients of fundholding practices had shorter waits for elective surgery than the patients of non-fundholders. Comparison of waiting times between fundholding and non-fundholding practices are potentially confounded by selection bias as fundholding was voluntary. We estimate the effect of a practice's fundholding status on the waiting times of its patients using both cross-sectional methods (OLS, propensity score, instrumental variables, Heckman selection correction and Heckman heterogenous effects estimators) and difference in differences methodologies to correct for selection bias. The estimated effect of fundholding status was to significantly reduce the waiting times for chargeable admissions of the patients of fundholders by 4.1-6.6% (or 4-7 days) with the instrumental variables and Heckman selection correction estimators yielding the highest estimates. We also find that patients of fundholding practices had shorter waits (by 3.7% or 2 days) for non-chargeable elective admissions, suggesting that fundholders were able to obtain shorter waits for all types of elective admissions. Copyright © 2004 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Suggested Citation

  • Mark Dusheiko & Hugh Gravelle & Rowena Jacobs, 2004. "The effect of practice budgets on patient waiting times: allowing for selection bias," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 13(10), pages 941-958.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:hlthec:v:13:y:2004:i:10:p:941-958
    DOI: 10.1002/hec.937
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Ted Pinchbeck, 2016. "Taking Care of the Budget? Practice-level Outcomes during Commissioning Reforms in England," SERC Discussion Papers 0192, Spatial Economics Research Centre, LSE.
    2. Mark Dusheiko & Maria Goddard & Hugh Gravelle & Rowena Jacobs, 2006. "Trends in health care commissioning in the English NHS: an empirical analysis," Working Papers 011cherp, Centre for Health Economics, University of York.
    3. Luigi Siciliani & Tor Iversen, 2012. "Waiting Times and Waiting Lists," Chapters,in: The Elgar Companion to Health Economics, Second Edition, chapter 24 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    4. Dixon, Huw & Siciliani, Luigi, 2009. "Waiting-time targets in the healthcare sector: How long are we waiting?," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(6), pages 1081-1098, December.
    5. Tor Iversen & Hilde Lurås, 2012. "Capitation and Incentives in Primary Care," Chapters,in: The Elgar Companion to Health Economics, Second Edition, chapter 26 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    6. Carol Propper, 2005. "Why economics is good for your health. 2004 Royal Economic Society Public Lecture," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 14(10), pages 987-997.
    7. Hugh Gravelle & Mark Dusheiko & Steve Martin & Pete Smith & Nigel Rice & Jennifer Dixon, 2011. "Modelling Individual Patient Hospital Expenditure for General Practice Budgets," Working Papers 073cherp, Centre for Health Economics, University of York.
    8. Daniel Polsky & Anirban Basu, 2012. "Selection Bias in Observational Data," Chapters,in: The Elgar Companion to Health Economics, Second Edition, chapter 46 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    9. Dusheiko, Mark & Gravelle, Hugh & Yu, Ning & Campbell, Stephen, 2007. "The impact of budgets for gatekeeping physicians on patient satisfaction: Evidence from fundholding," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(4), pages 742-762, July.
    10. Mark Dusheiko & Maria Goddard & Hugh Gravelle & Rowena Jacobs, 2008. "Explaining trends in concentration of healthcare commissioning in the English NHS," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 17(8), pages 907-926.
    11. Richard Cookson & Diane Dawson, 2012. "Hospital Competition and Patient Choice in Publicly Funded Health Care," Chapters,in: The Elgar Companion to Health Economics, Second Edition, chapter 20 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    12. Jones, A.M, 2010. "Models For Health Care," Health, Econometrics and Data Group (HEDG) Working Papers 10/01, HEDG, c/o Department of Economics, University of York.
    13. Ali, Shehzad & Cookson, Richard & Dusheiko, Mark, 2017. "Addressing care-seeking as well as insurance-seeking selection biases in estimating the impact of health insurance on out-of-pocket expenditure," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 177(C), pages 127-140.
    14. Dusheiko, Mark & Gravelle, Hugh & Jacobs, Rowena & Smith, Peter, 2006. "The effect of financial incentives on gatekeeping doctors: Evidence from a natural experiment," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(3), pages 449-478, May.

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