The Risk and Duration of Catastrophic Health Care Expenditures
Catastrophic medical expenses are an important economic risk facing the elderly. Little is known about the persistence of such out-of-pocket medical costs. We measure the time-series property of medical costs using information on medical deductions from a panel of tax returns. During the period of analysis, 1968-73, taxpayers could deduct medical expenses above 3 percent of income. We correct for the resulting censoring bias using multivariate Tobit estimated with a variant of the smoothed simulated maximum likelihood (SSML) method. The data suggest that the burden of out-of-pocket medical expenses is substantially larger for lower income families. Furthermore, the estimated coefficients suggest substantial time-persistence in out-of-pocket medical care costs; a $1 increase in out-of-pocket medical spending is predicted to increase future spending by an additional $2.80. These results may shed light both on the social value of catastrophic health insurance as well on aggregate saving behavior.
|Date of creation:||Aug 1992|
|Date of revision:|
|Publication status:||published as The Review of Economics and Statistics, 76(4), Nov. 1994, pp. 633-647|
|Note:||AG HE PE|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Web page: http://www.nber.org
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Venti, Steven F. & Wise, David A., 1991.
"Aging and the income value of housing wealth,"
Journal of Public Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 44(3), pages 371-397, April.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:4147. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ()
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.