The Determinants of Provincial Public Health Expenditures in Turkey: Evidence from a Spatial Data Analysis

Author name: 
Yildirim, J
Öcal, N
Alpaslan, B

This study investigates the determinants of provincial public health expenditures for Turkey, employing spatial econometrics models. To this end, the panel data at NUTS3 level for the period 2009-2019 have been employed. The exploratory spatial data analysis suggests that real GDP per capita, real health expenditure per capita, and all other socio-demographic variables used in the analysis are significantly spatially dependent. Also, the traditional East-West divide shows persistence in income and health indicators. Empirical results show that there is a spatial dependence in the provincial real public health expenditure per capita. This result corroborates the externality effect of government expenditure. The results also show the presence of strong path dependency, implying long-term policy stability. According to our findings, it seems that age structure, education level, and urbanization are important determinants of public health expenditure with significant spatial effects. Overall, our empirical results do not support the supply-induced demand theory, but rather indicate that demand side factors are more important determinants of central public health expenditures.

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