Gender Analysis of Healthcare Expenditures in Rural Nigeria.

Jerumeh T.R. and Awoyemi T.T.

Nigerian Institute of Social and Economic Research, Ibadan, Nigeria.

Department of Agricultural Economics, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria.

Accepted 8 February 2021

Citation: Jerumeh TR and Awoyemi TT (2021). Gender Analysis of Healthcare Expenditures in Rural Nigeria. Journal of Agricultural Economics and Rural Development, 7(2): 997-1009.

 

Copyright: © 2021: Jerumeh and Awoyemi. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are cited.

Health inequities have significant social and economic costs to both individual and societies. These inequities are largely due to gender based differences which influence health conditions, access to and utilization of health services. The study therefore carried out a gender analysis of healthcare expenditures in rural Nigeria. Secondary data from 2009 Harmonised National Living Standard Survey was employed in the study, from which 24,941 rural households were taken as the study sample. Analysis was done using descriptive statistics, Triple Hurdle Model, and Generalised Structural Equation Model.  Findings from the study showed that mean monthly expenditure on health per person was higher for male adults (₦7,256.40±₦629.00) than female adults (₦5,115.40±₦503.90) whereas the female youths spent more (₦4,433.60±668.10) on healthcare than male youths (₦3,857.90±₦671.30).  Although, adult females reported more illness and had higher medical consultation rate than males, their medical budget share of total household income was 1.95 % lower than that of adult males. Estimation of the Generalised Structural Model revealed that household size, per capita expenditure, marital status, years of education, occupation and health decision are the major factors influencing the health status of youths and adults in rural Nigeria. Since female adults spent less on their health than male adults despite reporting higher cases of sickness, efforts should be made to encourage increased women’s participation in productive activities so as to enable them to contribute more to household cash income thereby increasing their influence on household spending. Policy intervention options should also focus on literacy level, household size, type of occupation, per capita expenditure and marital status.

Key words: Gender, health care, medical expenditure, rural households

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