Psychological barriers to take-up of healthcare and child support benefits in the Netherlands

We empirically test an integral model for healthcare and child support benefits take-up using a probability sample of the Dutch population (N = 905). To examine how different psychological factors, in conjunction, explain take-up, we apply model averaging with Akaike’s Information Criterion (AICC). For both types of benefits, people’s perceptions of eligibility best explain take-up. For healthcare benefits, take-up also relates to perceptions of need. Exploratory analyses suggest that for healthcare benefits but not for child support benefits, executive functions, self-efficacy, fear of reclaims, financial stress, and welfare stigma explain perceived eligibility. We find no support for knowledge, support, and administrative burden as explanatory factors in take-up. We discuss the results in relation to the Capability Opportunity Motivation Behaviour (COM-B) model for developing behavioural change interventions.

Netspar, Network for Studies on Pensions, Aging and Retirement, is a thinktank and knowledge network. Netspar is dedicated to promoting a wider understanding of the economic and social implications of pensions, aging and retirement in the Netherlands and Europe.

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