Testing for selection bias and moral hazard in private health insurance: Evidence from a mixed public‐private health system

Abstract Separating selection bias from moral hazard in private health insurance (PHI) markets has been a challenging task. We estimate selection bias and moral hazard in Australia's mixed public-private health system, where PHI premiums are community-rated rather than risk-rated. Using longitudinal cohort data, with fine-grained measures for medical services predominantly funded by PHI providers, we find consistent and robust estimates of advantageous selection among hospitalized cardiovascular disease (CVD) patients. Specifically, we show that in addition to their risk-averse attributes, CVD patients who purchase PHI use fewer services that are not covered by PHI providers (e.g., gener...

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