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Health-seeking Behaviour in the Reform Process for Rural Households: The Case Study of Mwea Division,Kirinyaga District,Kenya


  • Rose Ngugi


The aim of this study was to look at the impact of cost sharing on preference order in the household and the implied pattern of health seeking behaviour. The study attempted to answer the questions- * How do households rank the available alternatives for health care services? * How does this differ across household members? * What explains the behaviour pattern? Cost sharing resulted in a drop in the use of public health facilities in Kenya. But, these facilities continued to take a high priority among the other alternatives when sickness befell. Shifts across the facilities indicated a search for health services that yielded utility equivalent to the fee charged, while demand for services across the alternative sources reflected complementarity in consumption. Several factors influenced the observed pattern: direct and indirect costs, income base, satisfaction with services received, and demand level in the household. As rational agents, users of health care services aimed to minimize costs and maximize their satisfaction..

Suggested Citation

  • Rose Ngugi, 1999. "Health-seeking Behaviour in the Reform Process for Rural Households: The Case Study of Mwea Division,Kirinyaga District,Kenya," Research Papers RP_095, African Economic Research Consortium.
  • Handle: RePEc:aer:rpaper:rp_095

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