Income-based disparities in health care utilisation under universal health coverage in Brazil, 2002-2003

Guido Cataife, Charles Courtemanche

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations

Abstract

Since Brazil's adoption of universal health care in 1988, the country's health care system has consisted of a mix of private providers and free public providers. We test whether income-based disparities in medical visits and medications remain in Brazil despite universal coverage using a nationally representative sample of over 48,000 households. Additional income is associated with less public sector utilisation and more private sector utilisation, both using simple correlations and regressions controlling for household characteristics and local area fixed effects. Importantly, the increase in private care use is greater than the drop in public care use. Also, income and unmet medical needs are negatively associated. These results suggest that access limitations remain for low-income households despite the availability of free public care.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)394-410
Number of pages17
JournalGlobal Public Health
Volume9
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2014

Keywords

  • Brazil
  • disparities
  • family health programme
  • income
  • universal health care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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