Background: Health insurance is an essential aspect of health care. This is because it enables the insured to acquire timely and essential health care services, besides offering financial protection from catastrophic treatment costs. This paper seeks to establish gender differentials and correlates of health insurance subscription in Zambia.
Methods: The data used in this study was obtained from the 2018 Zambia Demographic and Health Survey. Data was analyzed using STATA 13.0 software and focused on descriptive and Probit regression analyses.
Results: The study finds that for women and men, age, wealth category, education and professional occupation are positively associated with health insurance. While, being self-employed in the agricultural sector, negatively influences health insurance coverage for both sexes. Other variables have gender specific effects. For instance, being in marital union and in a clerical occupation increases the probability of having health insurance for women. While, being in the services, skilled and unskilled manual occupations increase the probability of health insurance for men. Further, residing in rural areas reduces the probability of having health insurance for men.
Conclusion: The study concludes that there are differences in factors that influence health insurance between women and men. Hence, this study highlights the need to enhance health insurance coverage by addressing the different factors that influence health insurance coverage among men and women. These factors include, enhancing education, job creation, diversifying insurance schemes and gender consideration in the design of NHIS.