Journal Article

Assessing the impact of public insurance on healthcare utilization and mortality: a nationwide study in China

Lin , L., Zai, E.
SSM-Population Health, 25:101615, 1–17 (2024)
Open Access


We investigate the effects of a significant health insurance expansion in rural China known as the New Cooperative Medical Scheme (NCMS). Our analysis is based on a nationwide dataset spanning from 2004 to 2011. We find that the NCMS effectively increases healthcare utilization, particularly inpatient admissions, and reduces the incidence for infectious diseases. In addition to the increased healthcare utilization, the reduction in the incidence for infectious diseases can be attributed to improved health knowledge and health behavior, both of which are associated with the expansion of insurance coverage. Our findings affirm the importance of insurance coverage in safeguarding low-income individuals from the adverse health consequences linked to infectious diseases.

Keywords: China, health policy, mortality
The Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research (MPIDR) in Rostock is one of the leading demographic research centers in the world. It's part of the Max Planck Society, the internationally renowned German research society.