Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10419/126616
Authors: 
Gerfin, Michael
Kaiser, Boris
Schmid, Christian
Year of Publication: 
2014
Series/Report no.: 
Discussion Papers, Universität Bern, Department of Economics 14-03
Abstract: 
Deductibles in health insurance generate nonlinear budget sets and dynamic incentives. This paper uses detailed individual claims data from a large Swiss insurance company to estimate the response in health care demand to the discrete price increase that is generated by resetting the deductible at the start of each calendar year. We use a regression discontinuity type framework based on daily data to estimate the change in health care demand right before and right after the turn of the year. We find that for individuals with high deductibles health care demand drops by 27%, which translates into an elasticity of - . 21. The decrease is most pronounced for inpatient care and prescription drugs. By contrast, for individuals with low deductibles there is no significant change in health care demand (except for prescription drugs). A remaining open question is whether the observed behavioral responses can be attributed to intertemporal substitution or whether they constitute a classic moral hazard effect.
Subjects: 
health care demand
nonlinear pricing
dynamic incentives
health insurance
JEL: 
C31
D12
I13
Document Type: 
Working Paper

Files in This Item:
File
Size
938.49 kB





Items in EconStor are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.