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Financial protection for the poor in Colombia: the effects of a subsidized health insurance scheme

Ramón Castaño () and Andres Zambrano ()

Documentos de Trabajo from Universidad del Rosario

Abstract: Financial protection is one of the objectives of health systems, which protects poor households from falling into poverty as a result of health care related expenses. Expanding prepayment schemes to the poor is difficult in developing countries because labor is largely informal. Providing health care free-at-point-of-service does not adequately target spending on the poorest, but occupation- or community-based schemes have also inherent limitations to achieve universal coverage. Colombia adopted a government-subsidized health insurance scheme (SHI) strategy. The political debate about increasing SHI enrollment needs evidence about the effectiveness of this scheme regarding financial protection. This study runs a four-part model to estimate the effect of SHI on out-of-pocket expenses by the poor that are currently uninsured, if they were enrolled in the SHI. The results show a 43% and 50% reduction in expenses at Bogotá and national level respectively, which confirms the effectiveness of SHI as a financial protection tool.

Keywords: Financial protection; subsidized insurance; out of pocket expenses; Colombia (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-ias and nep-lam
Date: 2007-03-01
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:col:000092:002723

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