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Medical care demand in a modern economy: A case study in Kuching, Malaysia

Tan, Phoi Tsze and Ali, Jamal (2007) Medical care demand in a modern economy: A case study in Kuching, Malaysia. In: International Economic Conference on Trade and Industry (IECTI) 2007, 3 - 5 December 2007, Bayview Hotel Georgetown, Penang. (Unpublished)

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Malaysia on her way towards a modern economy has undergone economic, social and demographic changes which have exerted significant impact on medical demand. By employing a two - part decision model, the outpatient care demand is modeled as a function of the price of medical care, price of home care, externalities to the use of medical care, health status, age, race and income. The units of the study consist of the working individuals in the city of Kuching where urbanization and modernization provide us with interesting measurable variables to analyze medical care demand in a modern economy. It is found that more women have utilized the outpatient care and this significant gender utilization differences is not attributed to the lower price of time. However, contrast to the statistics of developed countries; the mean expenditure on outpatient care for men is higher than women. More men have poor health status compared with women. The findings reveal that the determinants of outpatient care demand differ between men and women and support the arguments for estimating medical equations separately. Despite of the changing role of women, some evidence on the externalities to the use of medical care is obtained. Our findings also infer that opportunity cost and productivity of other family members’ time are important determinants of outpatient care demand. The income elasticity of less than one reveals that outpatient care is a necessity good. It is concluded that our finding has significant implication for the formulation of health care policy in the country.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Income, outpatient care, employer - sponsored plan, family characteristic
Subjects: R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine
Divisions: College of Business
Depositing User: Mrs. Juwita Johari
Date Deposited: 24 Feb 2011 01:15
Last Modified: 24 Feb 2011 01:15

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