Out-of-Pocket Health Spending Between Low- and High-Income Populations: Who is at Risk of Having High Financial Burdens?

Yu-Chu Shen, Joshua McFeeters

NBER Working Paper No. 11179
Issued in March 2005
NBER Program(s):Health Care

We examined characteristics of people with little, moderate, and high burden of out-of-pocket health spending separately for low-income (below 200% of Federal Poverty Line) and higher-income populations. We find that public insurance appears to offer the best financial protection against high out-of-pocket burden. People with private non-group coverage, regardless of their income levels, have the highest risk of being exposed to high out-of-pocket burden. Low-income adults with employer-sponsored insurance are also more likely to be in high burden group than the low-income uninsured adults. For higher-income families, having a family member in fair or poor health is another significant risk factor to increase the likelihood of high out-of-pocket burden. Increasing presence of HMO and Federally Qualified Health Centers appear to have lowered the odds of being in the high-burden category relative to low-burden category, especially for the low-income group.

**Circulation of this paper has been halted. Please contact the author ( for further information.**

This paper is not currently available on-line.
No more information is available.

The NBER Bulletin on Aging and Health provides summaries of publications like this.  You can sign up to receive the NBER Bulletin on Aging and Health by email.

Machine-readable bibliographic record - MARC, RIS, BibTeX

Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w11179

Published: Shen, Y. and McFeeters, J. 2006. Out-of-pocket health spending between low- and high-income populations: Who is at risk of having high expenses and financial burdens? Medical Care 44(3): 200-209

Users who downloaded this paper also downloaded* these:
Ravn, Schmitt-Grohé, and Uribe w10261 Deep Habits
w13800 Paper Withdrawn
Jin and Whalley w12941 The Power of Attention: Do Rankings Affect the Financial Resources of Public Colleges?
Ayres and Nalebuff w14094 Life-cycle Investing and Leverage: Buying Stock on Margin Can Reduce Retirement Risk
NBER Videos

National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138; 617-868-3900; email:

Contact Us