Signs of Inequality? Variations in Providing Home Health Care Across Care Organizations and Across European Countries in the IBenC Study

Hein Pj van Hout, Lisanne van Lier, Stasja Draisma, Jan Smit, Harriet Finne-Soveri, Vjenka Garms-Homolová, Judith E Bosmans, Anja Declercq, Pálmi Jónsson, Graziano Onder, Henriëtte G van der Roest

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Most countries aim to allocate home health care to those in need in a fair and equal way. Equal allocation implies that the amount of home care a person receives would reflect the level of health impairment and the need for resources. It is not clear whether countries succeed in attaining this. Our objective was to explore signs of (un)equal home health care provisioning across care organizations and across European health countries. We used data of the IBenC study collected from 2718 older community care recipients from 33 organizations in 6 Western European countries ( We benchmarked differences of provided and expected formal care time across organizations and countries. Expected formal care hours were estimated by multiplying the overall sample's mean formal hours with recipients' case mix weights from interRAI's resources utilization group profiles. We found substantial variations in provided formal care time among organizations both within and across countries that could not be explained by the case mix differences of recipients. This implied presence of inequality of home care provisioning. These findings may alert professionals and policy makers striving for equal home health care provisioning for dependent older persons.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1178632919837632
JournalHealth services insights
Publication statusPublished - 2019

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