Working paper 98/004 - Abstract

Private Demand and Public Provision: The Case of Private Health Care in the UK

Carol Propper

UK residents are entitled to free health care provided by the state, but despite this entitlement, the demand for private alternatives has been growing. This paper examines the determinants of private demand and finds that income, attitudes to the role for the state in health care provision and past purchase, controlling for unobserved individual effects, all determine demand. But available measures of public sector health care quality appear to have little impact, perhaps because they convey little relevant information.

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