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Modelling bivariate count distributions with finite mixture models: application to health care demand of married couples

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Abstract:

Count measures of health care utilization are often correlated with other measures of utilization. In addition, utilization measures display a high proportion of zero observations. This article attempts to accommodate both data features in one model, with an application to medical care usage of husbands and wives. A bivariate count representation is used to model dependence between husbands' and wives' utilizations, and a finite mixture specification accommodates the problem of excess zeros. Results show that married couples are characterized by two distinct subpopulations according to the intensity of utilization of the wife.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/00036840802600509

Affiliations: 1: Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC 27695-8109, USA 2: Department of Economics, Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, KY 42101, USA

Publication date: 2011-05-01

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