The effect of the availability of charity care to the uninsured on the demand for private health insurance.

Academic Article


  • The economic reasons why some people do not obtain health insurance are unclear. In this paper, I test the hypothesis that the availability of charity care to the uninsured reduces the likelihood of obtaining private coverage. I utilize variation in the availability of charity care across the different markets in the Community Tracking Study's Household Survey (CTS-HS) using an "access to care" measure of the uninsured's cost-related difficulties in obtaining medical care, to both aggregate across the various "safety net" providers and control for its potentially endogenous supply. I find evidence supporting this hypothesis for low-income people, in both the individual market and the employment-based group market. I also estimate a joint model of offer and take-up decisions for the group market sample and find that the availability of charity care reduces low-income workers' offer rates but not their take-up rates.
  • Status

    Publication Date

  • March 2005
  • Published In


  • Charities
  • Health Services Accessibility
  • Insurance, Health
  • Medically Uninsured
  • Private Sector
  • United States
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Pubmed Id

  • 15721044
  • Start Page

  • 225
  • End Page

  • 252
  • Volume

  • 24
  • Issue

  • 2