Why are health expenditures of very old people decreasing? An investigation on French data

Brigitte Dormont, Hélène Huber, Pauline Ricci
2011 unpublished
In all developed countries it is shown that health care expenditure is increasing with age for survivors, but decreasing with age for decedents. Moreover, one observes that health care expenditure decreases for very old people, aged 90 or more. The aim of this paper is to examine thoroughly the impact of age on a very rich database provided by the French national health insurance and concerning 203,348 individuals observed in 2009. Controlling with information about conditions, we compare
more » ... ments deriving from OLS, with evaluations resulting from quantile regressions, which makes it possible to compare the effects of age all along the expenditure distribution. Our results suggest that the decrease in expenditures observed for very old people is the resultant of two phenomena: a limitation in care use for old decedents and a selection effect which leads to less health care expenditures for very old survivors.