nep-hea New Economics Papers
on Health Economics
Issue of 2009‒05‒09
seven papers chosen by
Yong Yin
SUNY at Buffalo, USA

  1. Birds of a Feather Flock Together: A Study of Doctor-Patient Matching By Godager, Geir
  2. Marital Partner and Mortality: The Effects of the Social Positions of Both Spouses By Erikson, Robert; Torssander, Jenny
  3. The validity of vignettes in cross country health studies By Gupta, Nabanita Datta; Kristensen, Nicolai; Pozzoli, Dario
  4. Perinatal and Neonatal Mortality in Rural Punjab A Community Based Case-Control Study By Rohina Joshi
  5. Agricultural productivity and mortality: evidence from Kagera, Tanzania By Ikegami, Munenobu
  6. Why effects of social capital on health status differ between genders: considering the labor market condition By Yamamura, Eiji
  7. Differences of the effects of social capital on health status among residents: evidence from modern Japan. By Yamamura, Eiji

  1. By: Godager, Geir (Institute of Health Management and Health Economics)
    Abstract: In this paper we study individuals' choice of general practitioners (GPs) utilizing revealed preferences data from the introduction of a regular general practitioner scheme in Norway. Having information on relevant travel distances, we compute decision makers' travel costs associated with different modes of travel. Choice probabilities are estimated by means of nested logit regression on a representative sample of Oslo inhabitants. The results support the general hypothesis that patients prefer doctors who resemble themselves on observable characteristics: Individuals prefer GPs having the same gender and similar age. Specialist status of GPs was found to have a smaller effect on choice probabilities than other attributes such as matching gender. When travel costs are calculated by means of taxi prices, the estimated willingness to pay for specialist status of a GP amounts to € 0.89 per consultation, whereas the estimated willingness to pay for having a GP with the same gender amounts to respectively € 1.71 and € 3.55 for female and male decision makers, respectively.
    Keywords: GP services; Discrete choice; Willingness-to-pay; Health care demand
    JEL: C25 D12 I11
    Date: 2009–05–05
  2. By: Erikson, Robert (Swedish Institute for Social Research, Stockholm University); Torssander, Jenny (Swedish Institute for Social Research, Stockholm University)
    Abstract: Background Individual education, social class, social status and income are all associated with mortality, and this is likewise the case for the position of the marital partner. We investigate the combined effect on mortality of own and partner’s positions regarding these four factors. <p> Methods <p> Prospective follow-up of information in the 1990 Census of the Swedish population aged 30-59 (N=1 502 148). Data on all-cause mortality and deaths from cancer and circulatory disease for the period 1991-2003 were collected from the Cause of Death Register. Relative mortality risks were estimated by Cox regression. <p> Results <p> All-cause mortality of both men and women differs by women’s education and status and by men’s social class and income. Men’s education has an effect on their own mortality but not on their partner’s, when other factors are included in the models. Women’s education and men’s social class are particularly important for women’s deaths from circulatory diseases. <p> Conclusions <p> The partner’s social position has a clear effect on individual mortality, and women’s education seems to be particularly important. The results appear above all to support hypotheses about the importance of lifestyle and economic resources for socio-economic differences in mortality.
    Keywords: -
    Date: 2009–05–05
  3. By: Gupta, Nabanita Datta (Department of Economics, Aarhus School of Business); Kristensen, Nicolai (Institute of Government Studies & Aarhus School of Business); Pozzoli, Dario (Department of Economics, Aarhus School of Business)
    Abstract: Cross-country comparisons of subjective assessments may be ham- pered by sub-population speci…c response style. To correct for this, the use of vignettes has become increasingly popular - notably within cross- country health studies. However, the validity of vignettes as a means to re-scale across sample sub-populations critically rests on the assump- tion of "response consistency" (RC): vignettes and self-assessments are evaluated on the same scale. In this paper we seek to test this as- sumption by using objective measures of health along with subjective measures and vignettes. Our results indicate that the assumption of RC is not innocous and that our extended model improves the …t and signi…cantly changes the cross-country rankings of health vis-á-vis the standard Chopit model.
    Keywords: Cross-country health comparison; Subjective measures; Vignettes
    JEL: C25 I10
    Date: 2008–09–08
  4. By: Rohina Joshi
    Abstract: The study aimed at identifying social and biomedical risk factors attributable to perinatal and neonatal mortality (PN, NNM) in rural Punjab.
    Keywords: infants, hospitals, pregnancy, mortality, developing countries, IMR, National family health survey (NFHS), health status, neonatal deaths, girl child, India, biomedical, perinatal, neonatal, mortality, social, community, households, socio-economic status, stillbirths, Punjab
    Date: 2009
  5. By: Ikegami, Munenobu
    Abstract: We ask whether prime-age adult mortality due to HIV/AIDS decreases the endowment of knowledge for agricultural production in Kagera, Tanzania, reducing total factor productivity. We also quantify how much this negative effect contributes to the decrease in long-term household agricultural income growth compared to the contribution of decreased accumulation of productive assets; household members, land, and livestock. We find that prime-age adult mortality decreases the accumulation of knowledge stock as total factor productivity and the contribution of this negative effect to the decrease in agricultural income growth is larger than the contribution of decreased accumulation of each productive asset.
    Keywords: mortality; human capital; HIV/AIDS; agriculture; total factor productivity; Tanzania
    JEL: D9 Q12 O12
    Date: 2009–04–30
  6. By: Yamamura, Eiji
    Abstract: This paper explores how social capital is related with self-rated health status in Japan and how this relationship is affected by gender, using data for 3075 adult participants in the 2000 Social Policy and Social Consciousness (SPSC) survey. Controlling for endogenous bias, unobserved city size- and area-specific fixed effects, I find that social capital has a significant positive influence on health status for females but not for males. If samples are limited to persons with a job, social capital effects drastically decrease and the difference between genders diminishes. This empirical study provides evidence that people without a job can afford to allocate time to accumulate social capital and thereby improve their health status.
    Keywords: health status; social capital; labor market
    JEL: J21 I19 Z13
    Date: 2009–05–02
  7. By: Yamamura, Eiji
    Abstract: This paper aims to explore how social capital is related to self-rated health status in Japan and how this relationship depends on the extent to which a person is embedded into community. The study used data from 3 079 adult participants in the 2000 Social Policy and Social Consciousness (SPSC) survey. Controlling for unobserved city size- and area-specific fixed effects, I find through Ordered Probit estimation that social capital has a significantly positive effect on health status for long-time but not for short-time residents. Results also suggested that the experience of divorce is negatively associated with health status for long- time but not short-time residents. People can enjoy a social network that can be regarded as a kind of social capital if they are a member of a network; nevertheless, people appear to be negatively influenced if they are excluded from a network. Such positive and negative effects of social capital are more obvious when people are more deeply integrated into a community. An empirical study provided evidence that social capital and socio-economic effects on health status are significantly influenced by the extent to which respondents are integrated into a community.
    Keywords: social capital; health status
    JEL: I19 Z13
    Date: 2009–05–02

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