The distributional impact of public health expenditure in the United Kingdom

Publication type

Research Paper


project deliverable


Publication date

September 30, 2009


The paper concerns the inclusion of non-cash public transfers in the definition of households’ disposable income in order to obtain a more accurate and complete measure of individuals` command over resources. It focuses on non-cash income related to public health expenditure, trying to estimate the amount of such transfers and investigating their distributional impact.
After a description of the United Kingdom health system, the implemented methodology is reported and discussed. The distributional impact of public expenditure for health in the country is then analysed. The obtained results show that accounting for health expenditure increases people potentially available income by 14% on average with the highest increase experienced by older people, for whom strikingly higher per capita amounts need to be spent. Overall and within-between age groups inequality are also significantly reduced.


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