Household Expenditures on Primary, Secondary and Higher-level Health Care in Pokhara Metropolitan, Nepal
Introduction: Household health expenditures are the costs related to the health care and services from a house. The household health care expenditure constitutes a larger share (55.4%) of total health expenditures in Nepal which imply that health care can place a significant financial burden on households. Therefore, the aim of the study was to estimate the household expenditures on primary, secondary and higher-level health care in Nepalese households.
Methods: A community based cross sectional study was conducted among 335 household heads in Lekhnath municipality, Kaski, Nepal later changed in to Pokhara Metropolitan. An interview schedule was used to collect the data through face to face interview. Cluster sampling technique was used to select desired number of participants.
Results: More than eight out of ten participants (88.1%) visited private health facility for the treatment. More than half (61.5%) had taken secondary and higher-level services. Among out-of-pocket household expenditure the mean (±SD) direct cost was NRs.24100±36870 where minimum expenditure was NRs.50 while maximum expenditure was NRs. 255025. Similarly, mean (±SD) indirect cost was NRs.784.48±2319 where majority expenditures (96.8%) were direct costs while 3.2% were indirect costs. The mean (±SD) cost for primary health services was NRs.905.07±1729 where minimum was NRs.60 and maximum was NRs.10110. Similarly, the mean (±SD) cost for secondary and higher-level services was NRs.23200±37390 where minimum was NRs.50 and maximum was NRs.255025.
Conclusion: The average (±SD) household expenditure on different health services was NRs. 24800±38630 per annum, which is higher health expenditures for health service. The majority (96.8%) of health expenditures were included to direct costs while only 3.2% were in indirect costs. Higher expenditure was on secondary and higher-level services and it was NRs.23200 per annum while least expenditure on primary health services was NRs.905.07 per annum.