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Eur J Health Econ. 2014 Jun;15(5):533-51. doi: 10.1007/s10198-013-0493-0. Epub 2013 Jul 19.

Testing the red herring hypothesis on an aggregated level: ageing, time-to-death and care costs for older people in Sweden.

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  • 1Universität Duisburg-Essen, SchĂĽtzenbahn 70, 45127, Essen, Germany,


In this paper we test the 'red herring' hypothesis for expenditures on long-term care (LTC). The main contribution of this paper is to assess the 'red herring' hypothesis by using the probability of dying as a measure for time-to-death (TTD). In addition, we implement models that allow for age-specific TTD effects on LTC utilization as well as sex-specific effects. We also focus on total, institutional and domiciliary LTC separately. For our analysis we use high quality administrative data from Sweden. Our analysis is based on fixed effects estimates. We use our findings to project future LTC expenditures and show that, although TTD is a relevant predictor, age itself remains the main driver of LTC expenditures.

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