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Waiting Time And Socioeconomic Status—An Individual‐Level Analysis

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  • Karin Monstad
  • Lars Birger Engesæter
  • Birgitte Espehaug

Abstract

Waiting time is a rationing mechanism that is used in publicly funded healthcare systems. From an equity viewpoint, it is regarded as preferable to co‐payments. However, long waits are an indication of poor quality of service. To our knowledge, this analysis is the first to benefit from individual‐level data from administrative registers to investigate the relationship between waiting time, income, and education. Furthermore, it makes use of an extensive set of medical information that serves as indicators of patient need. Differences in waiting time by socioeconomic status are detected. For men, there is a statistically highly significant negative association between income and waiting time, driven by men in the highest income group, which constitutes 12% of all men. More educated women, that is, those having an education above compulsory schooling, experience lower waiting time than their fellow sisters with the lowest level of education. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Suggested Citation

  • Karin Monstad & Lars Birger Engesæter & Birgitte Espehaug, 2014. "Waiting Time And Socioeconomic Status—An Individual‐Level Analysis," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 23(4), pages 446-461, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:hlthec:v:23:y:2014:i:4:p:446-461
    DOI: 10.1002/hec.2924
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    2. Silvia Angerer & Christian Waibel & Harald Stummer, 2019. "Discrimination in Health Care: A Field Experiment on the Impact of Patients’ Socioeconomic Status on Access to Care," American Journal of Health Economics, MIT Press, vol. 5(4), pages 407-427, Fall.
    3. Werbeck, Anna & Wübker, Ansgar & Ziebarth, Nicolas R., 2021. "Cream skimming by health care providers and inequality in health care access: Evidence from a randomized field experiment," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 188(C), pages 1325-1350.
    4. repec:nip:nipewp:05/2015 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Nicolai Fink Simonsen & Anne Sophie Oxholm & Søren Rud Kristensen & Luigi Siciliani, 2020. "What explains differences in waiting times for health care across socioeconomic status?," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 29(12), pages 1764-1785, December.
    6. Gutacker, Nils & Siciliani, Luigi & Cookson, Richard, 2016. "Waiting time prioritisation: Evidence from England," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 159(C), pages 140-151.
    7. Kurt R. Brekke & Tor Helge Holmås & Karin Monstad & Odd Rune Straume, 2018. "Socio‐economic status and physicians' treatment decisions," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 27(3), pages 77-89, March.
    8. Landi, Stefano & Ivaldi, Enrico & Testi, Angela, 2018. "Socioeconomic status and waiting times for health services: An international literature review and evidence from the Italian National Health System," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 122(4), pages 334-351.
    9. Martin, Steve & Siciliani, Luigi & Smith, Peter, 2020. "Socioeconomic inequalities in waiting times for primary care across ten OECD countries," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 263(C).
    10. Silviya Nikolova & Arthur Sinko & Matt Sutton, 2015. "Do maximum waiting time guarantees change clinical priorities for elective treatment? Evidence from Scotland," Working Papers 1501, Academic Unit of Health Economics, Leeds Institute of Health Sciences, University of Leeds.
    11. Moscelli, Giuseppe & Siciliani, Luigi & Gutacker, Nils & Cookson, Richard, 2018. "Socioeconomic inequality of access to healthcare: Does choice explain the gradient?," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(C), pages 290-314.
    12. Mohammad Hajizadeh, 2018. "Does socioeconomic status affect lengthy wait time in Canada? Evidence from Canadian Community Health Surveys," The European Journal of Health Economics, Springer;Deutsche Gesellschaft für Gesundheitsökonomie (DGGÖ), vol. 19(3), pages 369-383, April.
    13. Siciliani, L., 2016. "Waiting Time Policies in the Health Sector," Seminar Briefings 001724, Office of Health Economics.
    14. Nikolova, Silviya & Sinko, Arthur & Sutton, Matt, 2015. "Do maximum waiting times guarantees change clinical priorities for elective treatment? Evidence from Scotland," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 72-88.
    15. Artmann, Elisabeth & Oosterbeek, Hessel & van der Klaauw, Bas, 2019. "Do doctors improve the health care of their parents? Evidence from admission lotteries," CEPR Discussion Papers 14061, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.

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