Incentives to Patients versus Incentives to Health Care Providers: The Users’ Perspective
22 Pages Posted: 17 Apr 2015
Date Written: April 2015
In theory, health care providers may adapt their professional behavior to the financial incentives driven by their remuneration. Our research question is whether the users of health care services anticipate such a behavior from their general practitioner (GP) and, if they do, what are the consequences of such an anticipation on their preferences regarding financial incentives. We propose a theoretical model to identify potential determinants of such preferences. We empirically test our theoretical predictions using the data from a survey that elicits individual preferences for either patients’ or providers’ hypothetical incentives in France. The empirical results confirm the theoretical ones by establishing that users tend to prefer to pay a copayment themselves when the amount of GPs’ incentives is high, the one of the patients’ copayment is low, they anticipate that their GP’s medical decisions are affected by financial incentives and their wealth is high. Otherwise, they prefer their GP to face financial incentives.
Keywords: incentives, health care providers, patients, individual preferences
JEL Classification: I13, I18, J33
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation