Insurance rebates, incentives and primary care in Australia

Date

2012

Authors

Connelly, Luke
Butler, James

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title

Publisher

Palgrave Macmillan Ltd

Abstract

Australia has a universal, compulsory, public health insurance scheme that includes insurance rebates for private fee-for-service medical practitioner services. Recent sweeping changes to the rebates for general practitioner (GP) services provide an opportunity to observe the effects of widespread insurance changes on the behaviour of GPs and aggregate outcomes such as quantities, prices and co-payments. In this paper, we study the effect of two important changes to subsidies for GP services, the first of which increased the rebates payable for services provided to specific patient groups, and the second of which increased rebates payable for all patients. Using economic theory, predictions of the effect of the rebate increase on quantities, prices and co-payments are produced that depend on the structure of the market. Using time-series data, we then present short-run empirical evidence that suggests that the supply curve for GP services is backward-bending.

Description

Keywords

Keywords: Behaviour; Ggeneral practice; Incentives; Industrial organisation; Insurance; Rebates

Citation

Source

The Geneva Papers on Risk and Insurance - Issues and Practice

Type

Journal article

Book Title

Entity type

Access Statement

License Rights

DOI

10.1057/gpp.2012.40

Restricted until

2037-12-31