The Take-Up Of Medical and GP Visit Cards in Ireland

Tue, 24 Apr 2018 13:00:00 IST

Claire Keane, ESRI

Location: UCD Geary Institute for Public Policy Seminar Room

The Take-Up Of Medical and GP Visit Cards in Ireland

This paper estimates take-up rates of medical and GP visit cards in Ireland and profiles those who do not take up their entitlement. Using SILC data, we replicate the medical and GP Visit card means test and identify families eligible for one of the cards. In SILC we also observe if families report holding Medical or GP Visit cards. We contrast this reported evidence with a family’s entitlement.  This allows us to identify  what proportion of families eligible under each card scheme take up their card entitlement. We estimate take-up rates of 74 per cent for medical cards and 10 per cent for GP visit cards. Results from a multivariate analysis show those families facing larger health costs due to poor health or chronic illness, lone parent households, recipients of social welfare payments and households where the chief economic supporter is older than 65 were more likely to take-up their card entitlement. On the other hand, a family where the chief economic supporter is self-employed, younger than 26 or single were less likely to take up their card entitlement. Families with private health insurance and those who reported having an unmet health need were also much less likely to claim their card.

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