Catastrophic Health Expenditures And Poverty In Pakistan
Author: Maham Masud

This study aims to examine the incidence and determinants of catastrophic health expenditures in Pakistan. Moreover, its impact on child schooling and poverty status of a household has also been examined. Catastrophic health expenditures persist across the world but they are more pronounced in developing countries. Annually millions of people fall below poverty due to these catastrophic payments. They are involuntary and affect the economic welfare of a household. People have to sacrifice their other basic needs in order to meet catastrophic health expenditures. This study defines catastrophic health expenditures at two thresholds i.e. 10 percent of total household expenditure and 40 percent of nonfood expenditure. The Pakistan Panel Household Survey (PPHS) data set of 2010 show high incidence of catastrophic health expenditures in Pakistan. However, the incidence and intensity values are higher when catastrophic payments are defined in relation to nonfood expenditure. Among socio-economic factors, any illness/disability in the household, the distance to health facility, hospitalization status of any household member and place of residence significantly affects the catastrophic health expenditures. However, individual characteristics of household head i.e. his age, sex and education status significantly affect catastrophe-2 (defined at 40 percent of nonfood expenditure) than catastrophe-1 (defined at 10 percent of total expenditure of a household). The results of Propensity Score Matching (PSM) technique shows that catastrophic health expenditures significantly affect poverty status of a household but no significant impact is seen in case of child schooling. Moreover, the results of poverty impact on Out of Pocket (OOP) payments have shown that there is an increase in poverty due to catastrophic health payments. Although, the incidence and intensity of poverty is less when poverty line is adjusted downward. Supervisor:- Dr. Shujaat Farooq

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Keywords : Health Expenditures, Pakistan
Supervisor: Shujaat Farooq

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