Household Health Expenditures in Morocco: Implications for Health Care Reform

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Author(s): Hotchkiss D R, El-Idrissi Z E, Hazim J, Gordillo A

Year: 1998

The purpose of this study is to investigate the level and distribution of household health care expenditures in Morocco, and to compare the level of health care funds provided by households with the levels provided by the government and international donors. In addition, the reliance of poor and non-poor households on both public and private providers is investigated. The study is based on data collected in the 1995 Demographic and Health Survey, which included a special supplement on health care expenditures. Descriptive statistics are presented on utilization of and out-of-pocket expenditures for antenatal and obstetric care, chronic care, and non-chronic care associated with illness and injury, by urban/rural status and by socio-economic status. The results indicate that government health care providers are an important source of modern health care not only for poor households, but for better-off households as well. While individuals who use private health care providers incur substantially higher costs than those who use public providers, an unexpected finding of the study is the degree to which public clients pay for health care services, despite the fact that public care is nominally priced in Morocco. The results indicate that carefully designed financing strategies may be effective in achieving a higher level of cost recovery and efficiency within the public sector.

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