nep-hea New Economics Papers
on Health Economics
Issue of 2010‒11‒27
six papers chosen by
Yong Yin
SUNY at Buffalo, USA

  1. Achieving equity in health through community based health insurance: India's experience with a large CBHI programme By Aradhna Aggarwal
  2. Measurement and Explanation of Inequality in Health and Health Care in Low-Income Settings By Eddy van Doorslaer; Owen O’ Donnell
  3. The Long Run Health Returns to College Quality By Jason Fletcher; David Frisvold
  4. Willingness to Pay for Public Health Policies to Treat Illnesses By Ryan C. Bosworth; Trudy Ann Cameron; J.R. DeShazo
  5. Long-Run Mortality Effects of Vietnam-Era Army Service: Evidence from Australia’s Conscription Lotteries By Siminski, Peter; Ville, Simon
  6. An exploratory analysis of the relationship between social interactions, income and health in Italy By Fiorillo, Damiano; Sabatini, Fabio

  1. By: Aradhna Aggarwal (Research Institute for Economics and Business Administration, Kobe University)
    Abstract: This paper analyses equity in one of the largest community based health insurance programme in India: Yeshasvini, run by the Department of Cooperation in Karnataka, a state in India. The analysis is based on a primary survey of 4109 households in rural Karnataka. The study covers various dimensions of vulnerability and assesses their relationship with enrolment, renewal of enrolment, and utilisation of health care services using logistic regression techniques. The results demonstrate that inequities do exist. However, they are less pronounced in the distribution of benefits than in enrolment and renewals. The study argues that while CBHI may be used as a mechanism to reach the most disadvantaged population groups, they can not be considered as substitute for government created health infrastructure.
    Keywords: Community-based health insurance (CBHI) Karnataka state India, Equity, Gender, vulnerability
    JEL: I18
    Date: 2010–11
  2. By: Eddy van Doorslaer; Owen O’ Donnell
    Abstract: This paper describes approaches to the measurement and explanation of income-related inequality and inequity in health care financing, health care utilization and health and considers the applicability and the feasibility of these methods in low-income countries. Results from a comparative study of 14 Asian countries are used to illustrate the main issues. [Discussion Paper No. 2008/04]
    Keywords: health inequality, equity, Asian, applicablity, feasibility
    Date: 2010
  3. By: Jason Fletcher; David Frisvold
    Abstract: The link between education and health is one of the most robust empirical relationships in the social sciences. However, little research has examined the effects of educational quality on health outcomes. In this paper, we estimate the long run effects on smoking and body mass index of graduating from a selective college in the 1960s using the Wisconsin Longitudinal Study, which has tracked siblings for over fifty years. Importantly, we are able to control for measures of health endowments, ability, and time preferences before the college enrollment decisions of the respondents as well as shared family and environmental factors by using sibling fixed effects. Our results suggest large effects of college selectivity on reducing overweight, but not smoking, for individuals in their 60s.
    Date: 2010–11
  4. By: Ryan C. Bosworth (Department of Applied Economics, Utah State University); Trudy Ann Cameron (University of Oregon Department of Economics); J.R. DeShazo (School of Public Affairs, UCLA)
    Abstract: As the U.S. contemplates health care reform that may involve more publicly provided health services, it is important to understand the likely patterns in public support for, and opposition to, public provision of treatments that increase recoveries and reduce deaths. We find that support (and willingness to pay for these policies) differs for health threats which are more or less prevalent and when larger or smaller populations are eligible to participate, for different types of beneficiaries, and across policies which represent more or less of a long-term commitment of public funds. Within a stated preference survey, individuals expressed their policy preferences over alternative public health programs, as well as their time preferences over alternative time-patterns for disbursement of potential lottery winnings. Our central modeling contribution is a utility-theoretic specification that permits us to estimate public health policy preferences jointly with individual-specific time preferences. We quantify a variety of dimensions of significant heterogeneity but draw particular attention to the prevalence of (a.) an unwillingness to pay for these policies via income tax increases regardless of their benefits, and (b.) a very strong pattern of self-interest in determining support for different types of policies.
    Keywords: Public Health Policies, Public Provision, Health Care, Treatment, Individual Time Preferences
    JEL: I18 H42 Q51 Q58
    Date: 2010–08–13
  5. By: Siminski, Peter (University of Wollongong); Ville, Simon (University of Wollongong)
    Abstract: We estimate the effect of Vietnam era Army service on mortality, exploiting Australia’s conscription lotteries for identification. We utilise population data on deaths during 1994-2007 and militarypersonnel records. The estimates are identified by over 51,000 compliers induced to enlist in the Army, including almost 16,000 who served in Vietnam. The implicit comparison group is the set of men who did not serve in the Army, but who would have served had their date of birth been selected in the ballot. We find no statistically significant effects on mortality overall, nor for any cause of death (by ICD-10 Chapter). Under reasonable assumptions on the death rate of compliers, the results can be expressed as relative risks (RR) of death during 1994-2007. The estimated overall RR associated with Army service is 1.03 (95% CI: 0.92, 1.19). On the assumption that Army service affected mortality only for those who served in Vietnam, the estimated RR for Vietnam Veterans is 1.06 (95% CI: 0.81, 1.51). We also find no evidence to support a hypothesis of offsetting effects due to domestic Army service (beneficial to longevity) and service in Vietnam (detrimental).
    Keywords: mortality; Vietnam veterans; Australia; conscription lottery
    JEL: H56 I18 I12 I10
    Date: 2010
  6. By: Fiorillo, Damiano; Sabatini, Fabio
    Abstract: This paper carries out a preliminary and exploratory investigation into the effect of various types of social interaction on health in Italy. After controlling for household income, education, work status and a number of socio-demographic variables, we find that the frequency of meetings with friends is significantly and positively associated with self-perceived health. The frequency of visits with relatives has a significant, but weaker effect. Membership in voluntary organizations is a significant and weakly negative predictor of good health. Other relevant explanatory variables are education and work status.
    Keywords: Statistical matching; income; wealth; well-being; social interactions; social capital; health; Italy.
    JEL: I12 Z13
    Date: 2010–11–15

This nep-hea issue is ©2010 by Yong Yin. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.