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Pay less, consume more? Estimating the price elasticity of demand for home care services of the disabled elderly

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  • Roquebert, Q.
  • Tenand, M.

Abstract

Although the consumption of home care is increasing with population ageing, little is known about its price sensitivity. This paper estimates the price elasticity of the demand for home care of the disabled elderly, using the French home care subsidy program ("APA"). We use an original dataset collected from a French District Council with administrative records of APA out-of-pocket payments and home care consumption. Identification primarily relies on inter-individual variations in producer prices. We use the unequal spatial distribution of producers to address the potential price endogeneity arising from non-random selection into a producer. Our results point to a price elasticity around -0.4: a 10% increase in the out-of-pocket price is predicted to lower consumption by 4%, or 37 minutes per month for the median consumer. Copayment rates thus matter for allocative and dynamic efficiencies, while the generosity of home care subsidies also entails redistributive effects.

Suggested Citation

  • Roquebert, Q. & Tenand, M., 2016. "Pay less, consume more? Estimating the price elasticity of demand for home care services of the disabled elderly," Health, Econometrics and Data Group (HEDG) Working Papers 16/16, HEDG, c/o Department of Economics, University of York.
  • Handle: RePEc:yor:hectdg:16/16
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    Keywords

    long-term care; price elasticity; public policy;

    JEL classification:

    • C24 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Truncated and Censored Models; Switching Regression Models; Threshold Regression Models
    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
    • I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health
    • J14 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of the Elderly; Economics of the Handicapped; Non-Labor Market Discrimination

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