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Enhancing the private provision of care through premiums for ability: the case of tuberculosis care in the Philippines


  • Stella Alabastro Quimbo

    (School of Economics, University of the Philippines, Diliman)


This paper examines how premiums for ability are set and how these can enhance the quality of care provided in private markets. The specific context for this study is the market for tuberculosis (TB) care in the Philippines. While the most cost- and clinically-effective treatment method known as TB Directly Observed Treatment Short Course (TB DOTS) is increasingly being provided by the public sector, few private doctors have adopted this protocol. As findings of multivariate regression analyses of private physicians' fees suggest, this low adoption rate can be partly explained by the modest premiums private doctors receive for using TB DOTS. While the public provision of TB DOTS should be pursued in earnest, this paper argues that the complementarity between public and private provision of TB DOTS should be strengthened, especially since Filipino TB patients seem to prefer private doctors. This goal can be achieved through user fees that (i) include a sufficiently large premium for physician ability and (ii) are paid through the social insurance system. Copyright © 2006 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Suggested Citation

  • Stella Alabastro Quimbo, 2006. "Enhancing the private provision of care through premiums for ability: the case of tuberculosis care in the Philippines," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(11), pages 1237-1244.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:hlthec:v:15:y:2006:i:11:p:1237-1244
    DOI: 10.1002/hec.1106

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Mark Gersovitz & Jeffrey S. Hammer, 2003. "Infectious Diseases, Public Policy, and the Marriage of Economics and Epidemiology," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 18(2), pages 129-157.
    2. Peabody, John W. & Nordyke, Robert J. & Tozija, Fimka & Luck, Jeff & Muñoz, Jorge A. & Sunderland, Anne & DeSalvo, Karen & Ponce, Ninez & McCulloch, Charles, 2006. "Quality of care and its impact on population health: A cross-sectional study from Macedonia," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 62(9), pages 2216-2224, May.
    3. Ernst R. Berndt & Neal J. Rappaport, 2001. "Price and Quality of Desktop and Mobile Personal Computers: A Quarter-Century Historical Overview," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(2), pages 268-273, May.
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