Skip to main content

Patient waiting times at public hospitals and the demand for private care

Funding: 2009: $300,000
2010: $280,000
2011: $300,000

Project Member(s): Savage, E., Stavrunova, O.

Funding or Partner Organisation: Australian Research Council (ARC Discovery Projects)

Start year: 2009

Summary: Reducing public hospital waiting times is the central issue in the Australian health care debate. Subsidies to private health insurance and increased expenditures to shorten waiting times both aim to ease pressure on the public hospital system. However there is no empirical evidence to support the relative equity or efficiency merits of alternative policies. This study will develop an empirical model of expected waiting times and estimate the impact of waiting times on insurance purchase and hospital choice. The model will be used to evaluate the effectiveness of alternative policies to improve access to public hospital care, a key factor in the National Priority of promoting and maintaining good health.


Stavrunova, O & Keane, M 2016, 'Adverse Selection, Moral Hazard and the Demand for Medigap Insurance', Journal of Econometrics, vol. 190, no. 1, pp. 62-78.
View/Download from: Publisher's site

Keywords: hospital waiting times, private health insurance, health policy, data augmentation, Markov Chain Monte Carlo methods,

FOR Codes: Health Policy Evaluation, Health Policy Economic Outcomes, Health Economics, Econometric and Statistical Methods, Public Economics- Taxation and Revenue, Microeconomic issues not elsewhere classified, Human Capital Issues