Cost-Sharing and Use of Health Services in Italy: Evidence from a Fuzzy Regression Discontinuity Design

22 Pages Posted: 7 Mar 2016

See all articles by Michela Ponzo

Michela Ponzo

Università degli Studi della Calabria - Department of Economics and Statistics

Vincenzo Scoppa

Università degli Studi della Calabria - Department of Economics and Statistics

Abstract

We use a Regression Discontinuity Design (RDD) to evaluate the impact of cost-sharing on the use of health services. In the Italian health system, individuals reaching age 65 and earning low incomes are given total exemption from cost-sharing for health services consumption. Since the probability of exemption changes discontinuously at age 65, we use a Fuzzy RDD in which the age threshold is used as an instrument for exemption. We find that prescription drug consumption, specialist visits and diagnostic checks remarkably increase with exemption. However, using several measures of health outcomes we do not find any change in individual health.

Keywords: health insurance, healthcare demand, cost-sharing, moral hazard, health outcomes, fuzzy regression discontinuity design, instrumental variables

JEL Classification: I10, I13, I11, I18, C26

Suggested Citation

Ponzo, Michela and Scoppa, Vincenzo, Cost-Sharing and Use of Health Services in Italy: Evidence from a Fuzzy Regression Discontinuity Design. IZA Discussion Paper No. 9772. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2742560

Michela Ponzo (Contact Author)

Università degli Studi della Calabria - Department of Economics and Statistics ( email )

Via P. Bucci
Arcavacata di Rende (CS), 87036
Italy

Vincenzo Scoppa

Università degli Studi della Calabria - Department of Economics and Statistics ( email )

via Ponte Bucci
Arcavacata di Rende, Cosenza 87036
Italy

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