In recent years, Italian citizens have increasingly been asked to share pharmaceutical costs, but at the same time, households' medicines expenditure has decreased. Cost-sharing policies have to be assessed not just in terms of limitation of moral hazard and revenue to the state, but also for equal opportunities for citizen users accessing health services. The aim of this article is to analyze how Italian co-payment policies ("ticket") on medicines may affect pharmaceutical expenditure of households, considering territorial and social groups variation. We reviewed the per capita private spending on medicines of Italian regions, separating pharmaceutical outlay and "ticket." Across the period 2001-2010 we found that the overall per capita private spending on medicines remained substantially stable, although medicine expenditure decreases while the "ticket" increases. When cost sharing rises, out-of-pocket spending on medicines by poorer families seems to remain unchanged; however, poorer families seem to reduce their pharmaceutical expenditure. Our analysis suggests that applying co-payment in Italy is partly successful, in terms of greater revenue to the health system, but in the last few years, cost-sharing increases would seem to have rebounded negatively on more vulnerable families, due to the economic crisis.

Social inequalities and pharmaceutical cost sharing in Italian regions

Tognetti M;
2014

Abstract

In recent years, Italian citizens have increasingly been asked to share pharmaceutical costs, but at the same time, households' medicines expenditure has decreased. Cost-sharing policies have to be assessed not just in terms of limitation of moral hazard and revenue to the state, but also for equal opportunities for citizen users accessing health services. The aim of this article is to analyze how Italian co-payment policies ("ticket") on medicines may affect pharmaceutical expenditure of households, considering territorial and social groups variation. We reviewed the per capita private spending on medicines of Italian regions, separating pharmaceutical outlay and "ticket." Across the period 2001-2010 we found that the overall per capita private spending on medicines remained substantially stable, although medicine expenditure decreases while the "ticket" increases. When cost sharing rises, out-of-pocket spending on medicines by poorer families seems to remain unchanged; however, poorer families seem to reduce their pharmaceutical expenditure. Our analysis suggests that applying co-payment in Italy is partly successful, in terms of greater revenue to the health system, but in the last few years, cost-sharing increases would seem to have rebounded negatively on more vulnerable families, due to the economic crisis.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11588/745748
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