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Dispensing practices and antibiotic use

  • Massimo Filippini

    (Department of Economics, ETH Zurich, Switzerland)

  • Giuliano Masiero


    (Department of Economics and Technology Management, University of Bergamo, Italy)

  • Karine Moschetti

    (Department of Economics, University of Lugano, Switzerland)

The regulation on prescribing and dispensing of antibiotics has a double purpose: to enhance access to antibiotic treatment and to reduce the inappropriate use of drugs. Nevertheless, incentives to dispensing physicians may lead to inefficiencies. We sketch a theoretical model of the market for antibiotic treatment and empirically investigate the impact of self-dispensing on the per capita outpatient antibiotic consumption using data from small geographic areas in Switzerland. We find evidence that a greater proportion of dispensing practices is associated with higher levels of antibiotic use. This suggests that health authorities have a margin to adjust economic incentives on dispensing practices in order to reduce antibiotic misuse.

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Paper provided by USI Università della Svizzera italiana in its series Quaderni della facoltà di Scienze economiche dell'Università di Lugano with number 0808.

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Length: 28 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:lug:wpaper:0808
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  1. Filippini, Massimo & Masiero, Giuliano & Moschetti, Karine, 2009. "Small area variations and welfare loss in the use of outpatient antibiotics," Health Economics, Policy and Law, Cambridge University Press, vol. 4(01), pages 55-77, January.
  2. Brekke, Kurt R. & Nuscheler, Robert, 2003. "Gatekeeping in health care," Working Papers in Economics 10/03, University of Bergen, Department of Economics.
  3. Brekke, Kurt R. & Nuscheler, Robert & Straume, Odd Rune, 2002. "Quality and location choices under price regulation
    [Qualitäts- und Standortwahl bei Preisregulierung]
    ," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Market Processes and Governance FS IV 02-28, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
  4. Gravelle, Hugh & Masiero, Giuliano, 2000. "Quality incentives in a regulated market with imperfect information and switching costs: capitation in general practice," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(6), pages 1067-1088, November.
  5. Fredrik Carlsen & Jostein Grytten, 1998. "More physicians: improved availability or induced demand?," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 7(6), pages 495-508.
  6. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521848053 is not listed on IDEAS
  7. Izabela Jelovac, 2001. "Physicians' payment contracts, treatment decisions and diagnosis accuracy," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 10(1), pages 9-25.
  8. Hunt-McCool, Janet & Kiker, B F & Ng, Ying Chu, 1994. "Estimates of the Demand for Medical Care under Different Functional Forms," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 9(2), pages 201-18, April-Jun.
  9. Michael Baye & Robert Maness & Steven Wiggins, 1997. "Demand systems and the true subindex of the cost of living for pharmaceuticals," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 29(9), pages 1179-1190.
  10. Grytten, Jostein & Sorensen, Rune, 2003. "Practice variation and physician-specific effects," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 403-418, May.
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