Risk aversion, trust in institutions and contingent valuation of healthcare services: trying to explain the WTA-WTP gap in the Dutch population

  • Jesús Martín-Fernández /
  • ángel López-Nicolás /
  • Juan Oliva-Moreno /
  • Héctor Medina-Palomino /
  • Elena Polentinos-Castro /
  • Gloria Ariza-Cardiel
Journal ar
Cost Effectiveness and Resource Allocation
  • Volumen: 19
  • Número: 1
  • Fecha: 01 December 2021
  • ISSN: 14787547
  • Source Type: Journal
  • DOI: 10.1186/s12962-021-00281-9
  • Document Type: Article
  • Publisher: BioMed Central Ltd
© 2021, The Author(s).Background: The preferences of citizens are a basic element to incorporate into the decision-making process when planning health policies. Contingent valuation (CV) is a common method for calculating the value for citizens that new technologies, interventions, and the provision of services or policies have. However, choosing the correct CV tool may not be a neutral decision. This work aims to assess the substitution of a healthcare service by comparing valuation differences between the willingness to pay (WTP) for the maintenance of the service versus the willingness to accept compensation (WTA) for its substitution, both of which are related to subject characteristics, with a particular focus on trust in institutions and risk aversion. Methods: A CV study was designed to study Dutch population preferences when physician assistants replace anaesthesiologists. Differences between the distributions of WTA and WTP were compared through full decomposition methods, and conditional quantile regression was performed. Results: Nearly two-thirds of surveyed citizens expressed null values for WTA and WTP. The other third systematically reported a value of WTA higher than that of WTP, which increased further with lower income and the possible presence of a strategic bias. In contrast, being more than 65 years old, having trust in government, and preferring anaesthesiologists decreased the WTA-WTP difference. Risk aversion had no clear association with the WTA-WTP gap. Conclusions: Known differences between the perceived value of health services from the perspective of gains and losses could be related to people¿s characteristics. Trust in government but not aversion to risk was related to the WTA-WTP differences. Identifying a profile of citizens who are averse to losing health services should be considered when designing and implementing health services or interventions or making disinvestment decisions.

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