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Demand Patterns for Treatment Insurance in Norway

Listed author(s):
  • Karl Ove Aarbu
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    In Scandinavia, the provision of health care services has been, almost entirely, the responsibility of the public health care system. However, in the last five to seven years there has been remarkable growth in the private health care market. These health care services are obtained normally through insurance contracts. In this paper, I seek explanations for this phenomenon, using data from Norway. First, using available market data, I document that the market for private treatment insurance—often labelled as “jump the treatment queue insurance”—is growing rapidly. Thereafter, I present a theoretical model that identifies primary drivers for individual demand for treatment insurance. The third step is to analyse a unique survey data set that is combined with aggregate county data on treatment queues. The overall results indicate that public waiting lists affect the demand for privately bought insurance, while employer-provided insurance does not seem to be affected. I find strong preference for this type of insurance among smokers and the self-employed. Moreover, income is an important determinant of insurance demand.

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    File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/portal/page/portal/DocBase_Content/WP/WP-CESifo_Working_Papers/wp-cesifo-2010/wp-cesifo-2010-04/cesifo1_wp3021.pdf
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    Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 3021.

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    Date of creation: 2010
    Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_3021
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    1. Besley, Timothy & Coate, Stephen, 1991. "Public Provision of Private Goods and the Redistribution of Income," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(4), pages 979-984, September.
    2. Einav, Liran & Finkelstein, Amy & Levin, Jonathan, 2009. "Beyond Testing: Empirical Models of Insurance Markets," Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt90g407hf, Department of Economics, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
    3. Amy Finkelstein & Kathleen McGarry, 2006. "Multiple Dimensions of Private Information: Evidence from the Long-Term Care Insurance Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(4), pages 938-958, September.
    4. Robert B. Barsky & Miles S. Kimball & F. Thomas Juster & Matthew D. Shapiro, 1995. "Preference Parameters and Behavioral Heterogeneity: An Experimental Approach in the Health and Retirement Survey," NBER Working Papers 5213, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Smith, V. Kerry & Taylor, Donald H., Jr. & Sloan, Frank A. & Johnson, F. Reed & Desvousges, William H., 2000. "Do Smokers Respond to Health Shocks?," Working Papers 00-08, Duke University, Department of Economics.
    6. William H. Greene & David A. Hensher, 2008. "Modeling Ordered Choices: A Primer and Recent Developments," Working Papers 08-26, New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business, Department of Economics.
    7. Barzel, Yoram, 1974. "A Theory of Rationing by Waiting," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 17(1), pages 73-95, April.
    8. Tim Besley & John Hall & Ian Preston, 1996. "The demand for private health insurance: do waiting lists matter?," IFS Working Papers W96/07, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
    9. Amy Finkelstein & James Poterba, 2006. "Testing for Asymmetric Information Using 'Unused Observables' in Insurance Markets: Evidence from the U.K. Annuity Market," NBER Working Papers 12112, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. W. Kip Viscusi & Joni Hersch, 2001. "Cigarette Smokers As Job Risk Takers," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 83(2), pages 269-280, May.
    11. Michael Hoel & Erik Magnus Sæther, 2001. "Public Health Care with Waiting Time: The Role of Supplementary Private Health Care," CESifo Working Paper Series 562, CESifo Group Munich.
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