nep-dem New Economics Papers
on Demographic Economics
Issue of 2024‒01‒22
two papers chosen by
Héctor Pifarré i Arolas, University of Wisconsin

  1. Cardiovascular Disease Mortality and Non-Particulate Air Pollution: Evidence from the 20th Century By Forshaw, Rachel; Kharadi, Natalya; McLaughlin, Eoin
  2. Health inequality and health insurance coverage: the United States and China compared By Costa-Font, Joan; Cowell, Frank; Shi, Xuezhu

  1. By: Forshaw, Rachel; Kharadi, Natalya; McLaughlin, Eoin
    Abstract: Air pollution is a global public health threat, responsible for more deaths annually than conventional lifestyle risk factors. While the link between particulate pollution and cardiovascular disease is well-established, evidence for gaseous pollutants remains limited. This study estimates the long-term population effects of a gaseous pollutant - SO2 - from 1901 to 1975 in a panel comprising 29 countries distributed globally, contributing to the under-explored literature on its cardiovascular disease mortality impact. Across a comprehensive range of empirical specifications, we observe a robust economically and statistically significant rise in cardiovascular disease mortality for an increase in SO2 emissions. We also contribute to the literature on economic growth and long-term health outcomes. Our historical perspective aligns with the call for more research on the effects of air pollution in developing nations. We highlight a complex trade-off: greater SO2 emissions increases cardiovascular disease mortality but leads to short-term regional cooling and reduced global warming and as such its abatement may contribute to future climate-related deaths.
    Keywords: Air pollution, Cardiovascular disease mortality, Economic growth, Environmental Kuznets Curve, Global public health, SO2 emissions
    JEL: I15 N30 N50 Q53 Q54 Q56
    Date: 2023
  2. By: Costa-Font, Joan; Cowell, Frank; Shi, Xuezhu
    Abstract: We study inequality in the distribution of self-assessed health (SAH) in the United States and China, two large countries that have expanded their insurance provisions in recent decades, but that lack universal coverage and differ in other social determinants of health. Using comparable health survey data from China and the United States, we compare health inequality trends throughout the period covering the public health insurance coverage expansions in the two countries. We find that whether SAH inequality is greater in the US or in China depends on the concept of status and the inequality-sensitivity parameter used; however, the regional pattern of SAH inequality is clearly associated with health-insurance coverage expansions in the US but not significant in China.
    Keywords: health inequality; self-assessed health; health insurance coverage; social determinants of health
    JEL: D63 I18 I30
    Date: 2023–12–16

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