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Different dental care setting: does income matter?

Author

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  • Sukanya Tianviwat

    (Prince of Songkla University, Faculty of Dentistry, Department of Preventive Dentistry, Songkhla, Thailand)

  • Virasakdi Chongsuvivatwong

    (Prince of Songkla University, Faculty of Medicine, Epidemiology Unit, Songkhla, Thailand)

  • Stephen Birch

    (McMaster University, Department of Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Hamilton, Canada)

Abstract

In this paper we consider the use of mobile dental clinics as a means of improving access to dental care among primary school children in Southern Thailand by reducing the opportunity cost of service use to parents. Parents' willingness to pay (WTP) is measured for three different services provided in a community hospital dental clinic and a school-based mobile clinic. Although the service setting does not affect significantly the WTP for treatment directly, the estimated positive association between WTP and income is modified by setting. The results indicate that the potential for mobile clinics to increase utilization of services among primary school children is associated with parents' income, with the difference in valuation of dental services between the two settings being less among lower income parents than higher income parents. However, even among lower income parents our results indicate that the potential for increasing service utilization among children depends on the improvements in access associated with the mobile clinic not being achieved at the opportunity cost of lower levels of effectiveness. Copyright © 2007 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Suggested Citation

  • Sukanya Tianviwat & Virasakdi Chongsuvivatwong & Stephen Birch, 2008. "Different dental care setting: does income matter?," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 17(1), pages 109-118.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:hlthec:v:17:y:2008:i:1:p:109-118
    DOI: 10.1002/hec.1237
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Phillips, Kathryn A. & Homan, Rick K. & Luft, Harold S. & Hiatt, Patricia H. & Olson, Kent R. & Kearney, Thomas E. & Heard, Stuart E., 1997. "Willingness to pay for poison control centers," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 343-357, June.
    2. Stephen Birch & Joy Melnikow & Miriam Kuppermann, 2003. "Conservative versus aggressive follow up of mildly abnormal Pap smears: Testing for process utility," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 12(10), pages 879-884.
    3. Donaldson, Cam & Shackley, Phil, 1997. "Does "process utility" exist? A case study of willingness to pay for laparoscopic cholecystectomy," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 44(5), pages 699-707, March.
    4. Jin-Tan Liu & James K. Hammitt & Jung-Der Wang & Jin-Long Liu, 2000. "Mother's willingness to pay for her own and her child's health: a contingent valuation study in Taiwan," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 9(4), pages 319-326.
    5. Hengjin Dong & Bocar Kouyate & John Cairns & Frederick Mugisha & Rainer Sauerborn, 2003. "Willingness-to-pay for community-based insurance in Burkina Faso," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 12(10), pages 849-862.
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    Cited by:

    1. Tianviwat, Sukanya & Chongsuvivatwong, Virasakdi & Birch, Stephen, 2008. "Prevention versus cure: Measuring parental preferences for sealants and fillings as treatments for childhood caries in Southern Thailand," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 86(1), pages 64-71, April.

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