nep-hea New Economics Papers
on Health Economics
Issue of 2011‒02‒19
twenty papers chosen by
Yong Yin
SUNY at Buffalo, USA

  1. The birth of the congressional clinic By Raphaël Godefroy
  2. Workplace smoking ban effects in an heterogeneous smoking population By Clément De Chaisemartin; Pierre-Yves Geoffard
  3. Mortality, family and lifestyles By Grégory Ponthière
  4. Long term care insurance puzzle By Pierre Pestieau; Grégory Ponthière
  5. Survival, reproduction and congestion: The spaceship problem re-examined By Pierre-André Jouvet; Grégory Ponthière
  6. Endemic diseases and agricultural productivity: Challenges and policy response By Martine Audibert
  7. Unplanned Pregnancy & the Impact on Sibling Health Outcomes By Grace Lordan
  8. Should we put a thin subsidy on the policy table in the fight against obesity-? By Grace Lordan; John Quiggin
  9. Socioeconomic Status and Health Outcomes in a Developing Country By Grace Lordan; Eliana Jimenez Soto; Richard Brown; Ignacio Correa-Valez
  10. Family trajectories and health: A life course perspective By Nicola Barban
  11. Peer Effects, Fast Food Consumption and Adolescent Weight Gain By Bernard Fortin; Myra Yazbeck
  12. Is foreign aid fungible? Evidence from the education and health sectors By N. VAN DE SIJPE
  13. Methods and evaluations for surveillance in industry, business, finance, and public health By Frisén, Marianne
  14. Who Pays for Health Care in Asia? By Owen O’ Donnell; Aparnaa Somanathan; Eddy van Doorslaer; Ravi P. Rannan-Eliya; Shiva Raj Adhikari
  15. A Contribution to Health Capital Theory By Titus Galalma
  17. Do Food Stamps Cause Obesity? A Generalised Bayesian Instrumental Variable Approach in the Presence of Heteroscedasticity By Salois, Matthew; Balcombe, Kelvin
  18. Does the Food Stamp Program Really Increase Obesity? The Importance of Accounting for Misclassification Errors By Vassilopoulos, Achilleas; Drichoutis, Andreas; Nayga, Rodolfo; Lazaridis, Panagiotis
  19. Effects of female labor participation on smoking behavior in Japan: Selection model approach By Yamamura, Eiji
  20. Consumer Demand for Healthy Diet: New Evidence from the Healthy Eating Index By Zhifeng Gao; Xiaohua Yu; Jonq-Ying Lee

  1. By: Raphaël Godefroy (PSE - Paris-Jourdan Sciences Economiques - CNRS : UMR8545 - Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) - Ecole des Ponts ParisTech - Ecole Normale Supérieure de Paris - ENS Paris - INRA, EEP-PSE - Ecole d'Économie de Paris - Paris School of Economics - Ecole d'Économie de Paris)
    Abstract: This paper investigates the impact of mortality in the districts/states represented in key congressional groups (i.e. committees, subcommittees, and parties) on the public investment in medical research in the US. I focus on National Institutes of Health (NIH) R01 grants awarded between 1985-2002. Exploiting the recomposition of any group after congressional elections, I estimate that the composition of the House Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies (HouS), impacts the NIH budget: a 1% increase of life-years lost because of a disease in the districts represented in HouS increases the funds for clinical research on that disease by 1.2-3.2%. I also find that this impact results from the larger bargaining power of HouS or the House majority, or both groups, in the budget process. No group significantly impacts the allocation of funds for basic research, or the allocation of funds across states.
    Keywords: health policy ; government policy ; publicly-provided goods ; medical research ; legislative bargaining
    Date: 2010–10
  2. By: Clément De Chaisemartin (EEP-PSE - Ecole d'Économie de Paris - Paris School of Economics - Ecole d'Économie de Paris, PSE - Paris-Jourdan Sciences Economiques - CNRS : UMR8545 - Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) - Ecole des Ponts ParisTech - Ecole Normale Supérieure de Paris - ENS Paris - INRA); Pierre-Yves Geoffard (EEP-PSE - Ecole d'Économie de Paris - Paris School of Economics - Ecole d'Économie de Paris, PSE - Paris-Jourdan Sciences Economiques - CNRS : UMR8545 - Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) - Ecole des Ponts ParisTech - Ecole Normale Supérieure de Paris - ENS Paris - INRA)
    Abstract: Many public policies, and especially health policies, are aimed at modifying individual behavior. This is particularly true of anti smoking policies. However, health behavior is highly heterogeneous, and so are individual responses to public policies such as taxes or restriction on use. We investigate the effect of a workplace smoking ban which took place in France in 2007. By its national aspect, the French reform offers a good case to study the effect of workplace smoking bans. Using original data on patients who consult tobacco cessation services, we show that the ban caused an increase in the demand for such services, and in the number of successful attempts to quit smoking. However, using survey data, we show that the ban had no measurable effect on overall prevalence in the general population. Models of quasi rational smoking behavior may offer an explanation for these two apparently contradictory findings.
    Keywords: workplace smoking ban ; tobacco control ; smoking cessation ; impact evaluation
    Date: 2010–08
  3. By: Grégory Ponthière (PSE - Paris-Jourdan Sciences Economiques - CNRS : UMR8545 - Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) - Ecole des Ponts ParisTech - Ecole Normale Supérieure de Paris - ENS Paris - INRA, EEP-PSE - Ecole d'Économie de Paris - Paris School of Economics - Ecole d'Économie de Paris)
    Abstract: While there is a large empirical literature on the intergenerational transmission of health and survival outcomes in relation to lifestyles, little theoretical work exists on the long-run prevalence of (un)healthy lifestyles induced by mortality patterns. To examine that issue, this paper develops an overlapping generations model where a healthy lifestyle and an unhealthy lifestyle are transmitted vertically or obliquely across generations. It is shown that there must exist a locally stable heterogeneous equilibrium involving a majority of healthy agents, as a result of the larger parental gains from socialization efforts under a higher life expectancy. Wealso examine the robustness of our results to the introduction of parental altruistic concerns for children's health and of asymmetric socialization costs.
    Keywords: altruism ; family ; lifestyle ; longevity ; socialization
    Date: 2010–09
  4. By: Pierre Pestieau (CREPP - Center of Research in Public Economics and Population Economics - Université de Liège, CORE - Center for Operations Research and Econometrics - Université Catholique de Louvain, CEPR - Center for Economic Policy Research - CEPR, PSE - Paris-Jourdan Sciences Economiques - CNRS : UMR8545 - Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) - Ecole des Ponts ParisTech - Ecole Normale Supérieure de Paris - ENS Paris - INRA, EEP-PSE - Ecole d'Économie de Paris - Paris School of Economics - Ecole d'Économie de Paris); Grégory Ponthière (PSE - Paris-Jourdan Sciences Economiques - CNRS : UMR8545 - Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) - Ecole des Ponts ParisTech - Ecole Normale Supérieure de Paris - ENS Paris - INRA, EEP-PSE - Ecole d'Économie de Paris - Paris School of Economics - Ecole d'Économie de Paris)
    Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to examine the alternative explanatory factors of the so-called long term care insurance puzzle, namely the fact that so few people purchase a long term care insurance whereas this would seem to be a rational conduct given the high probability of dependence and the high costs of long term care. For that purpose, we survey various theoretical and empirical studies of the demand and supply of long term care insurance. We discuss the vicious circle in which the long term care insurance market is stuck: that market is thin because most people find the existing insurance products too expensive, and, at the same time, the products supplied by insurance companies are too expensive because of the thinness of the market. Moreover, we also show that, whereas some explanations of the puzzle involve a perfect rationality of agents on the LTC insurance market, others rely, on the contrary, on various behavioral imperfections.
    Keywords: long term care insurance ; dependence ; annuity puzzle
    Date: 2010–06
  5. By: Pierre-André Jouvet (EconomiX - CNRS : UMR7166 - Université de Paris X - Nanterre, CORE - Center for Operations Research and Econometrics - Université Catholique de Louvain); Grégory Ponthière (PSE - Paris-Jourdan Sciences Economiques - CNRS : UMR8545 - Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) - Ecole des Ponts ParisTech - Ecole Normale Supérieure de Paris - ENS Paris, EEP-PSE - Ecole d'Économie de Paris - Paris School of Economics - Ecole d'Économie de Paris)
    Abstract: This paper re-examines the spaceship problem, i.e. the design of the optimal population under a fixed living space, by focusing on the dilemma between adding new beings and extending the life of existing beings. For that purpose, we characterize, under time-additive individual welfare depending negatively on population density, the preference ordering of a utilitarian social planner over lifetime-equal histories, i.e. histories with demographic conditions yielding an equal finite number of life-periods (imposed by resources constraints). The analysis of the spaceship problem contradicts widespread beliefs about the populationism of Classical Utilitarianism and the antipopulationism of Average Utilitarianism. We also study the invariance property exhibited by various utilitarian rankings to the total space available and to individual preferences. Finally, we compare histories for a spaceship with a stationary population, and try to accomodate intuitions about posterity and renewal of populations.
    Keywords: environmental congestion ; fertility ; longevity ; population ethics ; utilitarianism ; renewal
    Date: 2010–04
  6. By: Martine Audibert (CERDI - Centre d'études et de recherches sur le developpement international - CNRS : UMR6587 - Université d'Auvergne - Clermont-Ferrand I)
    Abstract: Contrary to Asian countries, the agricultural sector in Africa had not benefited from the green revolution success. After a long time of disinterest in the agriculture sector in Africa, several voices arise now in favour of greater efforts towards this sector. Several studies tend to show the crucial role of agriculture in African countries' growth and highlight the huge need of increasing the productivity in this sector. If increase in agriculture productivity requires both an expansion of irrigated areas and the adoption of high yield varieties, those innovations and their high development could be the source of negative health (and environmental) effects. Using a mega-analysis, this paper highlights first the links between health, disease and development and then agricultural productivity. The literature review shows that the negative effect of bad health was not systematically checked, and that the intensity of this effect depends of the disease, but also of the work productivity and the existence or not of a coping process. The second part of the paper focused on the development of high intensive agriculture as a risk factor for farmers' and rural inhabitants' health. This survey shows that whether irrigation and fertilizer and pest intensive use could be considered as highly health (and environmental) risk factors, appropriate control measures (such as for examples systematic maintenance of irrigation canals, alternate wetting and drying of irrigated fields or integrated pest management) considerably reduce this risk, while at the same time, increase the agriculture productivity.
    Keywords: agriculture;productivity;endemic disease;health risk factor;Africa
    Date: 2011–02–04
  7. By: Grace Lordan (School of Economics, The University of Queensland)
    Abstract: This work considers the impact that a new sibling has on a child?s health status. Objective health outcomes are observed before a new addition(s) to the family, with the same outcomes being observed afterwards. In addition, this work examines whether planning matters with respect to this dilution effect. That is, we argue that dilution effects should be higher in the event that an additional sibling is unplanned. To our knowledge this is unexplored in the literature with respect to all areas of parental resource allocation. The data used relates to a sample of approximately 2000 children from Peru. These children?s parents have been surveyed at 1 year and again at 5 years. To test our hypothesis we exploit data from both waves of the survey. For health outcomes the impact on height for age z scores and weight for age z scores are considered. The results highlight significant independent effects on both height and weight for age when an unplanned sibling is added to the household. In addition, the results show that it is the most vulnerable children that are impacted the most by an unplanned sibling. A subsequent analysis highlights that it is the lowest socio- economic households that are the most likely to have an unplanned sibling.
    Date: 2011
  8. By: Grace Lordan (School of Economics, The University of Queensland); John Quiggin (School of Economics, The University of Queensland)
    Abstract: The idea of using ?fat taxes? to curb obesity rates has been raised by many. In particular, the idea of taxing sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) has received considerable attention in the United States and has recently been discussed by President Obama. Rather less attention has been given to the alternative of ?thin subsidies?, that is, subsidies for the consumption of foods or beverages likely to be associated with reduced incidence of obesity. This commentary examines the case for a subsidy for artificially sweetened beverages (ASBs) or ?diet soft drinks?. In this commentary, we outline the evidence on the relationship between health outcomes, most notably obesity, and the consumption of SSBs and ASBs. In the light of the evidence we consider the economic effects of taxing SSBs, and the way in which those effects would be modified by the adoption of the alternative ?thin subsidy? based on subsidising ASBs.
    Date: 2011
  9. By: Grace Lordan (School of Economics, The University of Queensland); Eliana Jimenez Soto; Richard Brown (School of Economics, The University of Queensland); Ignacio Correa-Valez
    Abstract: While the relationship between socioeconomic status (SES) and health is well documented for developed countries, less evidence has been presented for developing countries. The aim of this paper is to analyse this relationship at the household level for Fiji, a developing country in the South Pacific, using original household survey data. To allow for the endogeneity of SES status in the household health production function we utilize a simultaneous equation approach where estimates are achieved by full information maximum likelihood. By restricting our sample to one, relatively small island, and including area and district hospital effects, physical geography effects are unpacked from income effects. We measure SES, as permanent income which is constructed using principal components analysis. An alternative specification considers transitory household income. We find that a 1% increase in wealth (our measure of permanent income) would lead to a 15% decrease in the probability of an incapacitating illness occurring intra-household. While presence of a strong causal relationship indicates that relatively small improvements in SES status can significantly improve health at the household level, it is argued that the design of appropriate policy would also require an understanding of the various mechanisms through which the relationship operates.
    Date: 2011
  10. By: Nicola Barban
    Abstract: In this paper, I investigate the role of family trajectory, i.e. the whole sequence of family events during the life course of early adults in shaping their health outcomes. I jointly consider union formation and childbearing, since the two life domains are highly connected and their intersections may have an effect on health outcomes. Data come from Wave I and Wave IV of the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health). The paper is divided in two parts. First, I focus on transitions and investigate if changes in timing (when events happen), quantum (what and how many transitions) and sequencing (in what order), have an effect on the health of young women. In the second part, I classify life course trajectories into six groups representing different ideal-types of family trajectories and I explore the association of these trajectories with health outcomes. Results suggest that family trajectories play an important role on different health outcomes. Controlling for selection and background characteristics, precocious and "non-normative" transitions are associated with lower self-reported health and higher propensity of smoking and drinking.
    Keywords: sequence analysis; life course analysis; health outcomes; transition to adulthood
    Date: 2011–02
  11. By: Bernard Fortin; Myra Yazbeck
    Abstract: This paper aims at opening the black box of peer effects in adolescent weight gain. Using Add Health data on secondary schools in the U.S., we investigate whether these effects partly flow through the eating habits channel. Adolescents are assumed to interact through a friendship social network. We first propose a social interaction model of fast food consumption using a generalized spatial autoregressive approach. We exploit results by Bramoullé, Djebbari and Fortin (2009) which show that intransitive links within a network (i.e., a friend of one of my friends is not my friend) help identify peer effects. The model is estimated using maximum likelihood and generalized 2SLS strategies. We also estimate a panel dynamic weight gain production function relating an adolescent’s Body Mass Index (BMI) to his current fast food consumption and his lagged BMI level. Results show that there are positive significant peer effects in fast food consumption among adolescents belonging to a same friendship school network. The estimated social multiplier is 1.59. Our results also suggest that, at the network level, an extra day of weekly fast food restaurant visits increases BMI by 2.4%, when peer effects are taken into account. <P>Cet article a pour but d’ouvrir la boîte noire des effets de pairs dans les gains de poids chez les adolescents. À partir des données Add Health sur les écoles secondaires aux États-Unis, nous étudions si ces effets découlent en partie des habitudes alimentaires. On suppose que les adolescents interagissent dans le cadre d’un réseau social d’amitié. Nous proposons une analyse des interactions sociales de consommation de malbouffe à l’aide d’un modèle autorégressif spatial généralisé. Nous exploitons les résultats de Bramoullé, Djebbari et Fortin (2009) qui montrent que les liens intransitifs à l’intérieur d’un réseau (i.e., un ami d’un de mes amis n’est pas mon ami) aide à l’identification des effets de pairs. Le modèle est estimé à partir de méthodes de maximum de vraisemblance et de variables instrumentales généralisées. Nous estimons en outre une fonction dynamique de gain de poids reliant l’indice de masse corporelle de l’adolescent (IMC) à sa consommation courante de malbouffe et à son niveau retardée d’IMC. Nos résultats montrent qu’il existe des effets de pairs positifs et significatifs dans la consommation de malbouffe parmi les adolescents appartenant au même réseau d’amis de l’école. Le multiplicateur social est de 1,59. Nos résultats suggèrent de plus qu’au niveau du réseau social, une journée additionnelle de consommation hebdomadaire dans un restaurant de malbouffe augmente l’IMC de 2,4 %, lorsque les effets de pairs sont pris en compte.
    Keywords: Obesity, overweight, peer effects, social interactions, fast food, spatial models., Obésité, embompoint, effets de pair, malbouffe, réseaux sociaux, modèle autorégressif spatial
    Date: 2011–02–01
  12. By: N. VAN DE SIJPE
    Abstract: This paper takes a fresh look at the issue of foreign aid fungibility. Unlike the bulk of existing empirical studies, I employ panel data that contain information on the specific purpose for which aid is given. This allows me to link aid given for education and health purposes to recipient public spending in these sectors. In addition, I attempt to distinguish between aid flows that are recorded on the recipient’s budget and those that are off-budget, and illustrate how a failure to differentiate between on- and off-budget aid produces biased estimates of fungibility. Sector programme aid is the measure of on-budget aid, while technical cooperation serves as a proxy for off-budget aid. In both sectors, across a range of specifications, technical cooperation leads to at most a small displacement of recipient public expenditure, implying limited fungibility for this type of aid. In static fixed effects models sector programme aid shows an almost one-for-one correlation with recipient public expenditure, again suggesting low fungibility, but this effect becomes imprecise and volatile in dynamic models estimated with system GMM.
    Keywords: foreign aid, fungibility, public education expenditure, public health expenditure
    JEL: E62 F35 H50 O23
    Date: 2010–11
  13. By: Frisén, Marianne (Statistical Research Unit, Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, Göteborg University)
    Abstract: An overview on surveillance in different areas is given. Even though methods have been developed under different scientific cultures, the statistical concepts can be the same. When the statistical problems are the same, progress in one area can be used also in other areas. The aim of surveillance is to detect an important change in an underlying process as soon as possible after the change has occurred. In practice, we have complexities such as gradual changes and multivariate settings. Approaches to handling some of these complexities are discussed. The correspondence between the measures for evaluation and the aims of the ap-plication is important. Thus, the choice of evaluation measure deserves attention. The com-monly used ARL criterion should be used with care.
    Keywords: expected delay; gradual change; likelihood ratio; monitoring; multivariate surveillance
    JEL: C10
    Date: 2011–02–10
  14. By: Owen O’ Donnell; Aparnaa Somanathan; Eddy van Doorslaer; Ravi P. Rannan-Eliya; Shiva Raj Adhikari
    Abstract: This paper describes the structure and the distribution of health care financing in 13 territories that account for 55% of the Asian population. Survey data on household payments are combined with Health Accounts data on aggregate expenditures by source to estimate distributions of total health financing. In all territories, high-income households contribute more than low-income households to the financing of health care. In general, the better off contribute more as a proportion of ability to pay in low and lower-middle income territories. The disproportionality is in the opposite direction in three high/middle income territories operating. [EQUITAP Project: Working Paper 1] [ /EquitapWP1.pdf]
    Keywords: health care financing, progressivity, equity, Asia
    Date: 2011
  15. By: Titus Galalma
    Abstract: This paper presents a theory of the demand for health, health investment and longevity, building on the human capital framework for health and addressing limitations of existing models. It predicts a negative correlation between health investment and health, that the health of wealthy and educated individuals declines more slowly and that they live longer, that current health status is a function of the initial level of health and the histories of prior health investments made, that health investment rapidly increases near the end of life and that length of life is finite as a result of limited life-time resources (the budget constraint). It derives a structural relation between health and health investment (e.g., medical care) that is suitable for empirical testing.
    Keywords: socioeconomic status, education, health, demand for health, health capital, medical care, life cycle, age, labor, mortality
    JEL: D91 I10 I12 J00 J24
    Date: 2011–01
  16. By: Yoshiro Tsusui (Graduate School of Economics, Osaka University, Japan; CREED, FEB, University of Amsterdam, Netherlands); Uri Benzion (Department of Economics, Ben Gurion University; Interdisciplinary Department of Social Sciences, Western Galilee College, Israel); Shosh Shahrabani (Economics and Management Department, Max Stern Academic College of Emek Yezreel, Israel)
    Abstract: In this paper, we investigate what people in Japan consider when deciding to take the influenza vaccination. We develop an economic model to explain the mechanism by which people decide to take the influenza vaccination. Using our model and the data obtained from a large-scale survey we conducted in Japan, we demonstrated that people make rational decisions about vaccinations after considering its cost and benefits. People consider the probability of infection, severity of the disease, and the vaccinationfs effectiveness and side effects. The time discount rate is another consideration because the timing of costs and benefits of the vaccination differ. Risk aversion (fearing the contraction of the flu and vaccinationfs side effects) also affects the decision. People also deviate from rationality-altruism and status quo bias play important roles in the decision-making. Overconfidence indirectly affects the decision via perception variables such as the subjective probability of infection and assessment of influenzafs severity. The decision also depends on attributes such as gender, age, and marital status. If the general perception of flu and vaccination is inaccurate, supplying accurate information regarding those may increase or decrease the vaccination rate, depending on whether this perception is, respectively, higher or lower than the objective rates. Thus, we examine whether the general perception is biased. Our survey suggests that disseminating information on the vaccinationfs effectiveness may increase the rate of vaccination, whereas that on the probability of infection may have the opposite effect.
    Keywords: influenza; inoculation; survey; time preference; Japan
    JEL: I19
    Date: 2010–08
  17. By: Salois, Matthew; Balcombe, Kelvin
    Abstract: The impact of covariates on obesity in the US is investigated, with particular attention given to the role of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. The potential endogeneity of participation in SNAP is considered as a potential problem in investigating its causal influence on obesity using instrumental variable (IV) approaches. Due to the presence of heteroscedasticity in the errors, the approach for dealing with heteroscedastic errors in Geweke (1993) is extended to the Bayesian instrumental variable estimator outlined in Rossi et al. (2005). This approach leads to substantively different findings to a standard classical IV approach to correcting for heteroscedasticity. Although findings support the contention that the SNAP participation rate is associated with a greater prevalence of obesity, the evidence for this impact is substantially weakened when using the methods introduced in the paper.
    Keywords: Bayesian; Food Stamps; Food Insecurity; Instrumental Variabls; Heteroscedasticity; Obesity.
    JEL: I38 I00 C31 D10 C11
    Date: 2011–02–08
  18. By: Vassilopoulos, Achilleas; Drichoutis, Andreas; Nayga, Rodolfo; Lazaridis, Panagiotis
    Abstract: Over the last few decades, the prevalence of obesity among US citizens has grown rapidly, especially among low-income individuals. This has led to questions about the effectiveness of nutritional assistance programs such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as the Food Stamps Program (FSP). Results from previous studies generally suggest that FSP participation increases obesity. This finding is however based on analyses that assumed that participants do not misclassify their program participation. Significant misclassification errors have been reported in the literature. Using propensity score matching estimation and a new method to conduct extensive sensitivity analysis, we find that this finding is quite sensitive to misclassification errors above 10% and to functional form assumptions.
    Keywords: matching estimators; sensitivity analysis; food stamps; obesity
    JEL: D12 C63 I10
    Date: 2011–01
  19. By: Yamamura, Eiji
    Abstract: Using individual level data (the Japanese General Social Survey), this paper aims to explore how interaction between genders contributes to the cessation of smoking in Japan, where females are distinctly less inclined to smoke than males. Controlling for various socioeconomic factors and selection bias, I find through a Heckman-type selection estimation that rates of female employment in workplaces are negatively associated with male smoking but not with female smoking. These results suggest that male smokers are more inclined to cease smoking when they are more likely to have contact with nonsmokers of the opposite sex. Overall, this empirical study provides evidence that the psychological effect of the presence of people in one’s surroundings has a direct significant effect upon smoking behavior. However, this effect is observed only among males and not females.
    Keywords: Female labor participation; Labor market; Smoking behavior
    JEL: Z13 I10
    Date: 2011–02–02
  20. By: Zhifeng Gao (University of Florida); Xiaohua Yu (Georg-August-University Göttingen); Jonq-Ying Lee (University of Florida)
    Abstract: A large volume of literature has been focusing on the measure of diet quality and consumer demand for food. However, little has estimated consumer demand for diet quality. In this article, we systematically estimate consumer demand for diet quality using the healthy eating index (HEI) developed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The Results show that consumers have insufficient consumption of the food containing dark green, orange vegetable, legumes and total grain. Age and education have significant impact on consumer demand for diet quality but income does not. The own price elasticities of demand for diet quality are inelastic and are larger than cross price elasticities. Asymmetric cross price elasticity exists between the diet quality of solid fats, alcoholic beverages and added sugars and the quality of other diet groups. This information is critical in policies and programs that are designed to improve consumer healthy food choice which can reduce social cost of public health.
    Keywords: Healthy Eating Index; Diet quality; Demand; Household production; Translog cost function
    JEL: D12
    Date: 2011–02–08

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