Socio-Economic Predictors of Health Insurance Claims: Evidence from Ghana

Samuel Antwi, Xicang Zhao, Eric Kofi Boadi, Eugene Oware Koranteng


The objective of this study was to determine whether there is an association between socio-economic variables and health insurance claims and if other variables mediate between these relationships. In this work, data was collected from the insured of the Ghana National Health Insurance Scheme with the help of the National Health Insurance database and the patients’ attendance register of the Koforidua Regional Hospital, from 1st January to 31st December 2011. The generalized linear regression (GLR) models and the SPSS version 17.0 were used for the analysis. The result shows that socio-economic variables have a statistically significant independent association with health insurance claims, demonstrating in each case that the more socially disadvantaged the greater the health insurance claims. Alcohol drinking and cigarette smoking are mediators of the relationship between each socio-economic measure and health insurance claims. Low income has a significant effect on health insurance claims independent of the other socio-economic variables, but this becomes non-significant after adjusting for alcohol and smoking. It is suggested that the government should consider building more health centers, clinics and cheap-compounds in at least every community, to help reduce the travel time in accessing health care. The ministry of health and the Ghana health service should engage older citizens by encouraging them to use hospitals when they are sick instead of other alternative care providers.

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International Journal of Economics and Finance  ISSN  1916-971X (Print) ISSN  1916-9728 (Online)

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