nep-age New Economics Papers
on Economics of Ageing
Issue of 2007‒08‒14
six papers chosen by
Claudia Villosio
LABORatorio R. Revelli

  1. Pension Systems and their Influence on Fertility and Growth By Johannes Holler
  2. An Analysis of the Impact of Age and Proximity of Death on Health Care Costs in Ireland By Richard Layte
  3. Do Consultation Charges Deter General Practitioner Use Among Older People? A Natural Experiment By Richard Layte; Hannah McGee; Ann O'Hanlon
  4. Age, Socioeconomic Status and Obesity Growth By Charles L. Baum II; Christopher J. Ruhm
  5. Senescence can play an essential role in modelling and estimation of vector based epidemiological indicators: demographical approach By Vassili N. Novoseltsev; Anatoli I. Michalski; Janna A. Novoseltseva; Anatoli I. Yashin; James R. Carey; Thomas W. Scott
  6. Social interaction effects in an inter-generational model of informal care giving By Lisa Callegaro; Giacomo Pasini

  1. By: Johannes Holler
    Abstract: This paper studies the implications of di¤erent public pension systems on fertility and economic growth. Employing a three period overlapping gener- ations endogenous growth model we compare the di¤erent impacts of pay-as- you-go-, fully funded- and informal pension systems. The novelty of our work lies in the formulation of altruism that is assumed to be one sided (descending) for economies represented by a public pension system and two sided (descend- ing and ascending) for economies with informal pension systems. Through the incorporation of a mixed procreation motive we can study the case of fully crowded out intrafamilial transfers inside a public pension system model while still capturing fertility endogenously. We show that the introduction of public pension systems to a developing economy reduce fertility and stimulate economic growth. Through a comparison of the di¤erent public pension systems we highlight that a fully funded pension system results in higher economic growth compared to a pay-as-you-go one despite higher fertility because the growth enhancing e¤ect of the higher capital stock is dominant. This suggests that observed fertility and growth di¤erences between the US and Europe can partly be explained by the di¤erent types of pension systems.
    JEL: H55 J13 O41
    Date: 2007–06
  2. By: Richard Layte (Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI))
    Abstract: Research has shown that older individuals are far more likely to avail of health care and there is concern in a number of countries that the trend toward population ageing may mean that health care expenditures increase to unsustainable levels. However, there is a growing body of evidence that the approach of death rather than age per se may be the main determinant of health care costs. Previous analyses of the relationship between proximity to death and costs have used rare longitudinal data on costs and whether died and none have used a national sample. In this paper we use a more commonly found data type – a national panel survey to show that proximity to death is indeed a more significant predictor of expenditure on GP and hospital services than age. Using random effects panel models we show that there is a significant gradient in costs as death approaches. Controlling for proximity to death there is no age gradient in costs. This conclusion remains unchanged adjusting for differential health inpatient costs across age groups. In fact, adjustment steepens the gradient in costs as death approaches.
    Keywords: Ageing, cost of dying, Healthcare expenditure, panel survey
    Date: 2007–05
  3. By: Richard Layte (Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI)); Hannah McGee (Dublin and Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland); Ann O'Hanlon (Dublin and Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland)
    Abstract: Background: A change in the pricing of general practitioner care in the Republic of Ireland in 2001 provides a natural experiment of the influence of economic incentives on GP visiting. Methods: Social surveys (N=937 in 2000 & N=1053 in 2004) were carried out before and after the change in pricing arrangements. OLS and logistic regression were used to examine change in both the overall probability of attending the GP and the frequency of visiting in the previous year. Results: 93% in 2000 and 95% in 2004 visited their GP at least once. Where the proportion of those aged 65 to 69 visiting at least once fell by 1% between 2000 and 2004, the proportion aged 70 to 74 increased by 4.6%; those 75 to 79 increased by 6.3%; those aged 80 to 84 increased by 3.2%. Frequency of visiting remained stable at 5.3 visits per year but increased with age and worse health. Logistic regression models confirmed the increase in the probability of visiting for over 70s between 2000 and 2004.
    Keywords: general practice, utilisation, equity
    Date: 2007–05
  4. By: Charles L. Baum II; Christopher J. Ruhm
    Abstract: The rapid growth in obesity represents a major public concern. Although body weight tends to increase with age, the evolution of obesity over the lifecycle is not well understood. We use longitudinal data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth to examine how body weight changes with age for a cohort moving through early adulthood. We further investigate how the age-obesity gradient differs with socioeconomic status (SES) and begin to examine channels for these SES disparities. Our analysis uncovers three main findings. First, weight rises with age but is inversely related to SES at given ages. Second, the SES-obesity gradient widens over the lifecycle, a result consistent with research examining other health outcomes such as overall status or specific medical conditions. Third, a substantial portion of the SES "effect" is transmitted through race/ethnicity and the translation of advantaged family backgrounds during childhood into high levels of subsequent education. Conversely, little of the SES difference appears to be propagated through family income, marital status, number of children, or the set of health behaviors we control for. However, approximately half of the SES-weight correlation persists after the inclusion of controls, illustrating the need for further study of mechanisms for the gradient.
    JEL: I12
    Date: 2007–08
  5. By: Vassili N. Novoseltsev (Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany); Anatoli I. Michalski (Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany); Janna A. Novoseltseva; Anatoli I. Yashin (Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany); James R. Carey; Thomas W. Scott
    Abstract: In the paper basic epidemiological indicators, produced by an aging population of vectors, are calculated. In the study we follow two lines: calculations for demographically structured population and individual life-history approach. We discuss the advantages and limitations of these approaches and compare the results of our calculations with epidemiological indicators obtained for non-aging population of vectors.
    Keywords: Gibraltar, age effect, disease control, gerontology
    JEL: J1 Z0
    Date: 2007–01
  6. By: Lisa Callegaro (Department of Economics, University Of Venice Cà Foscari); Giacomo Pasini (Department of Economics, University Of Venice Cà Foscari; Economics and Organization, School for Advanced Studies in Venice)
    Abstract: We study jointly the health perception of the elderly and the care giving decision of their adult children. Social interactions play a crucial role: elder parents' health perception depends on relations with household members. On the other hand adult children make their care giving decisions strategically, meaning that each of them considers his siblings' decision. We find empirical evidence which support this claim using the 2004 wave of the SHARE survey. We estimate social interaction effects by means of methods taken from the spatial econometric literature. Health perception relation with care giving depends on the determinants of adult children's decision to care: Parents' health may be modelled as a common good for parents and children; the latter's decision may be driven by bequest motives or by pure altruism and/or cultural values. We test implications of the model thanks to the unique features of the SHARE dataset: it is trans--national, allowing to control for cultural and institutional differences, it contains information on health status of over-50 Europeans and details on their social and intergenerational relations.
    Keywords: Insurance, Social SHARE, care giving, social interactions, health, aging
    JEL: L26
    Date: 2007

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