Factors influencing class agreement and medical expenditure by age in South Korea

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Abstract

Background:

There are not many studies evaluating the factors affecting medical expenditure for different age groups, income classes, and subjective social classes. Therefore, this study evaluates the agreement between income class, objective class, and subjective social class and analyzes the factors that affect medical expenditure by age group.

Methods:

Multiple regression analysis and χ2 test were conducted to evaluate the compatibility between income quintiles and subjective social classes and to identify the factors influencing medical expenditure by subjective social class and age using raw data from the 2013 Korea Health Panel (n = 9,385) of the Korea Institute for Health and Social Affairs and the National Health Insurance Service.

Results:

When the class compatibility between income quintiles and subjective social classes was analyzed by age group, young people in the first, second, and third income quintiles considered themselves to be in the second subjective social class while and those in the fourth and fifth income quintiles considered themselves to be in the third subjective social class. Moreover, middle-aged and old people in the first, second, third, and fourth income quintile considered themselves to be in the second subjective social class while those in the fifth income quintile considered themselves to be in the third subjective social class.

Conclusion:

Social support, public health approaches, and medical treatment service models are needed to eliminate comparative deprivation among individuals.

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