Bourne, Paul A.
Author Affiliation, Ana.
Inflation, public health care and utilization in Jamaica
Australian Journal of Basic and Applied Sciences
Date of Publication
Objective: The current study examines whether public and private health care utilization switching occurs in periods of inflation, and secondly to investigate the role of inflation on illness/injury, prevalence of health insurance coverage, cost of health care in both public as well as private health care. Method: The research design used secondary data from the Planning Institute of Jamaica and the Statistical Institute of Jamaica. The current study used 2 decades of statistics on inflation, expenditure on health care (public-private utilization), self-reported illness/injury, and annual prevalence of health insurance coverage. Results: Over the past 2 decades [1988-2007] there has been a narrowing of public and private health care utilization in Jamaica . On examination of aforementioned issues, we found that inflation accounted for some of this lowered gap. Another interesting finding is the direct association between inflation and injury/illness, and inflation is inversely correlated with prevalence of health insurance coverage. Conclusion: Jamaicans have a preference for the utilization for private health care than public health care services . Despite this preference, persistent increases in the inflation rate, economic recession in America, lowered remittances, increasing costing on ‘food and beverage’ and ‘meats and poultry’, increased fuel bills are causing a substitution to public health care utilization.....