Cover: Long-term determinants of supplemental health insurance coverage in the Medicare population

Long-term determinants of supplemental health insurance coverage in the Medicare population

Published 1998

by Lee A. Lillard, Jeannette Rogowski, Raynard Kington

Purchase Print Copy

Add to Cart Paperback10 pages Free

Using data from a new data source, the 1990 Health Supplement to the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, the authors examine the determinants of private insurance coverage among the elderly. Among those with supplemental insurance through an employment-based source, the primary determinant of having insurance is work history, specifically job tenure and occupation of household heads and their spouses. Among those who do not have employer-provided insurance, wealth is the most important economic factor in the purchase of private insurance. Blacks, persons with less education and women household heads are less likely to purchase supplemental insurance. The authors find little evidence that persons in prior poor health are more likely to purchase supplemental insurance, and the most important determinant of dental or drug coverage is having employer-based insurance. The current trend toward decreased generosity of post-retirement health benefits implies that fewer older Americans will have insurance for these services.

Originally published in: The Gerontologist, v. 37, no. 3, pp. 314-323.

This report is part of the RAND reprint series. The Reprint was a product of RAND from 1992 to 2011 that represented previously published journal articles, book chapters, and reports with the permission of the publisher. RAND reprints were formally reviewed in accordance with the publisher's editorial policy and compliant with RAND's rigorous quality assurance standards for quality and objectivity. For select current RAND journal articles, see External Publications.

This document and trademark(s) contained herein are protected by law. This representation of RAND intellectual property is provided for noncommercial use only. Unauthorized posting of this publication online is prohibited; linking directly to this product page is encouraged. Permission is required from RAND to reproduce, or reuse in another form, any of its research documents for commercial purposes. For information on reprint and reuse permissions, please visit

RAND is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.