The role of non-need factors in individual GP utilisation analysis and their implications for the pursuance of equity: a cross-country comparison
A substantial amount of health care resources is allocated within the UK using formulae that relate funding to measures of population need. The aim of this paper is to demonstrate the importance of non-need factors in determining utilisation of services at an individual level and explore the implications inclusion of such factors has in the consideration of equity. In the paper we develop a utility model that accords a role to non-health factors in the determination of service use. A series of functions incorporating non-health factors as explanatory variables in GP utilisation functions are estimated using data from the British Household Panel Survey. The functions are decomposed to ascertain the role of service structure and examine the role of income across the four countries of the UK in explaining utilisation. The implications of our findings for the pursuance of equity in the NHS when individual choice has an explicit role are discussed.
European Journal of Health Economics
Originally 'Online First' Apr.2007; Online in A/S except current year + 2; Albert Sloman Library Periodicals *restricted to Univ. Essex registered users*