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Effect of Having a Usual Source of Care on Medical Expenses ? Using the Korea Health Panel Data

Journal of Korean Medical Science 2019년 34권 35호 p.229 ~ 229
김두리 ( Kim Doo-Ri ) - Jaseng Medical Foundation Jaseng Spine and Joint Research Institute

 ( Kim Sol-Lip ) - Inje University Ilsan Paik Hospital Department of Laboratory Medicine
 ( Park Hye-Kyeong ) - Inje University Ilsan Paik Hospital Department of Internal Medicine
 ( Ha In-Hyuk ) - Jaseng Medical Foundation Jaseng Spine and Joint Research Institute
 ( Jung Bo-Young ) - Jaseng Medical Foundation Jaseng Spine and Joint Research Institute
 ( Ryu Won-Hyung ) - Jaseng Medical Foundation Jaseng Spine and Joint Research Institute
 ( Lee Sang-Il ) - University of Ulsan College of Medicine Department of Preventive Medicine
 ( Sung Nak-Jin ) - Dongguk University Ilsan Hospital Department of Family Medicine

Abstract


Background: There is a controversy about the effect of having a usual source of care on medical expenses. Although many studies have shown lower medical expenses in a group with a usual source of care, some have shown higher medical expenses in such a group. This study aimed to empirically demonstrate the effect of having a usual source of care on medical expenses.

Methods: The participants included those aged 20 years and older who responded to the questionnaire about “having a usual source of care” from the Korean Health Panel Data of 2012, 2013, and 2016 (6,120; 6,593; and 7,598 respectively). Those who responded with “I do not get sick easily” or “I rarely visit medical institutions” as the reasons for not having a usual source of care were excluded. The panel regression with random effects model was performed to analyze the effect of having a usual source of care on medical expenses.

Results: The group having a usual source of care spent 20% less on inpatient expenses and 25% less on clinic expenses than the group without a usual source of care. Particularly, the group having a clinic-level usual source of care spent 12% less on total medical expenses, 9% less on outpatient expenses, 35% less on inpatient expenses, and 74% less on hospital expenses, but 29% more on clinic expenses than the group without a usual source of care.

Conclusion: This study confirmed that medical expenses decreased in the group with a usual source of care, especially a clinic-level usual source of care (USC), than in the group without a usual source of care. Encouraging people to have a clinic-level USC can control excessive medical expenses and induce desirable medical care utilization.

키워드

Usual Source of Care; Korea Health Panel Data; Panel Analysis; Health Expenditure; Primary Health Care
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