Corruption in the Health Sector: Evidence from Unofficial Consultation Fees in Bangladesh

31 Pages Posted: 4 Sep 2015

See all articles by Wahid Abdallah

Wahid Abdallah

BRAC University

Shyamal Chowdhury

The University of Sydney

Kazi Iqbal

Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies (BIDS)

Abstract

We study the incidence and extent of bribes paid to the doctors in the public health facilities which are cleverly identified using a nationally representative survey. The survey asks households about the fees paid to public doctors, not about the bribe, which makes it less prone to reporting bias. We find that though consultations are free in the public health facilities, 41% of the patients who visited them paid about US$2 as a consultation fee, which is about 16% of their total medical expenditure. Three interesting generalized results that we find on the determinants of incidence and extent of bribe payment are: First, bribe givers and non-givers are different in terms of observed characteristics. Second, the same doctors, when sit in a private facility, charge more, setting an upper limit of bribes at public facilities. Third, travel time of the service seekers is used as a price discriminating device by the public service providers. Results have important implications for combating corruption, especially in developing countries.

Keywords: corruption, public health, price discrimination, Bangladesh

JEL Classification: D73, I18, L11

Suggested Citation

Abdallah, Wahid and Chowdhury, Shyamal and Iqbal, Kazi, Corruption in the Health Sector: Evidence from Unofficial Consultation Fees in Bangladesh. IZA Discussion Paper No. 9270. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2655310

Wahid Abdallah (Contact Author)

BRAC University ( email )

66 Mohakhali C/A
Dhaka 1212 Bangladesh
Dhaka, 1212
Bangladesh

Shyamal Chowdhury

The University of Sydney ( email )

University of Sydney
Sydney, NC NSW 2006
Australia

Kazi Iqbal

Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies (BIDS)

E-17, Agargao, Shere Bangla Nagar
Dhaka, 1207
Bangladesh

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
18
Abstract Views
256
PlumX Metrics