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Abstract

For the past few decades, the household healthcare expenditures have experienced a phenomenal growth in Singapore. This paper seeks to identify the underlying socio-economic factors that contribute towards this phenomenon by employing time series data to examine the household willingness to spend on healthcare from 1970 to 2006. The results from our log-linear regression show that the willingness to spend on healthcare is positively related to the proportion of Singapore's population who are elderly, the literacy rate, the ratio of price of other goods and services to the price of healthcare, and the establishment of Singapore's mandatory health savings plan, Medisave. In terms of their effects on the growth of Singapore's willingness to spend on healthcare, the most important factors are the ageing of the population and the increase in the literacy rate.

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