The Household Health Spending and Impoverishment: Findings from the Households Survey in Shiraz, Iran
The present study aimed to investigate the households' impoverishment due to the healthcare costs in Shiraz in 2012. In this household's survey, 800 households were studied in Shiraz. The study sample was selected using stratified and cluster sampling in the urban and rural areas, respectively. The information was collected using the household section of the World Health Survey questionnaire. In order to determine impoverishment due to health spending, at first, the households' food-based poverty line (subsistence expenditure) was measured. Then, households' health expenditure was subtracted from their total expenditure and if the obtained value was lower than the households' food-based poverty line, the households was considered to be impoverished due to health expenditures. The collected data were entered into the SPSS (version 16) statistical software and analyzed using descriptive statistic, Chi-square test, and logistic regression in backward method. The study results showed that 7.1% of the households (CI: 0.071±0.018) were impoverished because of healthcare expenditures. Besides, the households in the first quintile were more likely to be faced with poverty compared to those in the other quintiles (p<0.05). Being covered by health insurance did not affect the protection from poverty due to health costs. Moreover, the participants living in rural areas were faced with poverty more than those living in urban areas (p<0.05). It seems that health expenditure can be an economic shock for household in Shiraz and through spending on health a household may fall into poverty. As insurance had no effect on impoverishment, it implies that change in health insurance plans and ways of health financing is necessary.
Bangladesh Med Res Counc Bull 2014; 40 (2): 58-62
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