Individual's Use of Care While Uninsured

Effects of Time Since Episode Inception and Episode Length

Published in: NBER Working Paper #13137, Cambridge, MA: National Bureau of Economic Research, May 2007

Posted on RAND.org on December 31, 2006

by Carole Roan Gresenz, Jeannette Rogowski, Jose J. Escarce

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Few studies have addressed how use of care may vary over the course of an episode of being uninsured or across uninsured episodes of varying duration. This research models the probability that an uninsured individual has (a) any medical expenditures or charges, and (b) any office-based visit during each month of an uninsured episode. We find that the ultimate length of an individual's episode of being uninsured bears relatively little on individuals' use of healthcare in any particular month and that the probability of health care utilization rises during the first year of the episode, with more use in the second six months of the year compared to the first six months.

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