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Does culture matter at all in explaining why people still use traditional medicines?

Sato, Azusa and Costa-i-Font, Joan (2012) Does culture matter at all in explaining why people still use traditional medicines? LSE Health working papers, 27. LSE Health, London, UK.

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Why do individuals still use traditional medicines when modern treatments are available? Economic explanations for an individual’s use of traditional instead of modern medicines are scarce and often fail to consider explanations beyond the conventional. This paper puts forward an economic explanation for the use of traditional medicine. First, traditional medicines were the default form of health care available in pre-colonial times where industry influence was yet to develop. Hence, both those individuals who exhibit lower incomes and are left out of health insurance coverage are more likely to use traditional medicines. Second, cultural attitudes and ethnic group controls explain variation in utilisation, even among those who have health insurance. Results are suggestive of the validity of cultural interpretations.

Item Type: Monograph (Working Paper)
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2012 The Authors
Library of Congress subject classification: R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine
Sets: Departments > Social Policy
Research centres and groups > LSE Health
Collections > LSE Health Working Paper Series in Health Policy and Economics
Identification Number: 27
Date Deposited: 15 May 2012 08:59

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