nep-hea New Economics Papers
on Health Economics
Issue of 2013‒11‒16
29 papers chosen by
Yong Yin
SUNY at Buffalo

  1. Do wage subsidies for disabled workers result in deadweight loss? – evidence from the Danish Flexjob scheme By Nabanita Datta Gupta; Mona Larsen; Lars Brink Thomsen
  2. Gaining weight through retirement? Results from the SHARE survey By Godard, Mathilde
  3. Early Marriage, Women Empowerment and Child Mortality: Married Too Young To Be a «Good Mother»? By Guilbert, Nathalie
  4. A review on estimation of stochastic differential equations for pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic models By Donnet, Sophie; Samson, Adeline
  5. Inequalities of Opportunities in Health and Natural Reward: a European Perspective By Tubeuf, Sandy; Trannoy, Alain; Jusot, Florence; Bricard, Damien
  6. Male and Female GPs incomes: A study of the determinants through quantiles regressions By Franc, Carine; Dumontet, Magali
  7. How would informal caregivers react to an increase in formal home-care use by their elderly dependent relatives in France? By Goltz, Andreas; Arnault, Louis
  8. Circumstances and Efforts: How important is their correlation for the measurement of inequality of opportunity in health? By Trannoy, Alain; Tubeuf, Sandy; Jusot, Florence
  9. Mental Illness and Unhappiness By Richard Layard; Dan Chisholm; Vikram Patel; Shekhar Saxena
  10. Health and the Political Agency of Women By Sonia Bhalotra; Irma Clots-Figueras
  11. Estimating the drivers and projecting long-term public health expenditure in the European Union: Baumol's "cost disease" revisited By João Medeiros; Christoph Schwierz
  12. The determinants of attrition in drug development: a duration analysis By Barrenho, E; Smith, PC; Miraldo, M
  13. Hospital quality and costs: evidence from England By Smith, PC; Laudicella, M; Li Donni, P
  14. Modeling Health in a CGE Framework: A Case Study of India By Nitesh Sahay; John Cockburn; Mitu Pathak
  15. Disparities in Post-Transition Outcomes by Level of Care Needs Among Former Nursing Home Residents. By Wilfredo Lim; Carol V. Irvin
  16. Findings from HeA PA and Implications for ACA Implementation. By Leslie Foster; Adam Dunn; Maggie Colby
  17. Money Follows the Person 2012 Annual Evaluation Report. By Carol V. Irvin; Noelle Denny-Brown; Matthew Kehn; Rebecca Sweetland Lester; Debra Lipson; Wilfredo Lim; Jessica Ross; Alex Bohl; Victoria Peebles; Samuel Simon; Bailey Orshan; Susan R. Williams; Eric Morris; Christal Stone
  18. Managing Care Transitions in Medicaid: Spotlight on Community Care of North Carolina. By Marsha Gold; Winnie Wang; Julia Paradise
  19. Association Between Enhanced Access Services in Pediatric Primary Care and Utilization of Emergency Departments: A National Parent Survey. By Joseph S. Zickafoose; Lisa R. DeCamp; Lisa A. Prosser
  20. Does malaria control impact education? A study of the Global Fund in Africa. By Maria Kuecken; Josselin Thuilliez; Marie-Anne Valfort
  21. The Consequences of Teenage Childbearing Before Roe v Wade By Kevin Lang; Russell Weinstein
  22. Care and cure: Compete or collaborate? Improving inter-organizational designs in healthcare. A case study in Dutch perinatal care. By Pieters, A.J.H.M.
  23. From headscarves to donation: Three essays on the economics of gender, health and happiness. By Ugur, Z.B.
  24. Food Prices and Population Health in Developing Countries: An Investigation of the Effects of the Food Crisis Using a Panel Analysis By Lee, Suejin; Lim, Jae-Young; Lee, Hyun-Hoon; Park, Cyn-Young
  25. Is caring for elderly parents detrimental for women’s mental health? The influence of the European North-South gradient By Cinzia Di Novi; Elenka Brenna
  26. The Parental Co-Immunization Hypothesis By Miguel Portela; Paul Schweinzer
  27. The Dow is Killing Me: Risky Health Behaviors and the Stock Market By Chad Cotti; Richard A. Dunn; Nathan Tefft
  28. Seatbelt Use Following Stricter Drunk Driving Regulations By Scott Adams; Chad Cotti; Nathan Tefft
  29. Alcohol-Related Motor Vehicle Crash Risk and the Location of Alcohol Purchase By Chad Cotti; Richard A. Dunn; Nathan Tefft

  1. By: Nabanita Datta Gupta (Department of Economics and Business, Aarhus University); Mona Larsen (SFI - The Danish National Centre for Social Research); Lars Brink Thomsen (Danmarks Nationalbank)
    Abstract: We evaluate the effects of wage subsidy programs for the disabled, in particular, their potential for welfare-loss reduction vs. deadweight loss creation. We do this in the context of the Danish Flexjob scheme, a large, nation-wide scheme that was implemented in 1998 and targeted towards improving the employment prospects of the long-term disabled with partial working capacity. We analyse the hiring response to a shock in the wage reimbursement amount to certain firms using the program. Firms received a salary reimbursement for both current and new employees granted a Flexjob subsidy. In 2002, the reimbursement to government firms was lowered while the reimbursement to municipal and regional employers remained the same. We combine the reform with unique data on whether or not a new Flexjob hiree was previously employed in a regular (unsubsidized) job at the same firm. Thus, we can investigate whether the changes in the reimbursement amount to governmental units affected the share of Flexjobs within such firms that were allocated to retained employees versus to new hires. The findings show substantial substitution between “insiders” and “outsiders” after the reform. After the reform, governmental firms create fewer Flexjobs. At the same time, the composition of Flexjob hires within such firms changes substantially: the share of new Flexjobs allocated to retained employees is twice as large as it would have been in absence of the reform. The finding on deadweight loss seems to run counter to the theoretical prediction. A possible alternative mechanism for the finding could be that when subsidies are reduced and worker productivity is not known with certainty, employers have an economic incentive to fill Flexjob positions from inside the firm.
    Keywords: disability, wage subsidies, deadweight loss, difference-in-differences
    JEL: I38 J14 C21
    Date: 2013–11–04
  2. By: Godard, Mathilde
    Abstract: In this paper, we use IV-techniques to identify the causal e ect of retirement among the 50-69 year-old on Body Mass Index (BMI) and related weight measures. Based on the 2004 and 2006 waves of the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE), the identi cation strategy exploits the European variation in retirement schemes to produce an exogeneous shock in retirement behaviour. Our results show that retirement induced by discontinuous incentives in social security systems causes a 0.20 point increase in the probability of being overweight or obese.
    Keywords: Body Mass Index; Obesity; Retirement; Instrumental Variables;
    JEL: I10 J26 C23
    Date: 2013–01
  3. By: Guilbert, Nathalie
    Abstract: This paper uses data from recent Senegalese Demographic and Health Surveys to explore the link between female empowerment and child mortality via early marriage, defined as marriage before age 16. There exist three channels through which early marriage reduces a mother's ability to take good care of her children: the harmful physical consequences of early sex and pregnancy; a disrupted education; and reduced autonomy and bargaining power. Controlling for the first two of these allows us to isolate the empowerment effect of early marriage. We estimate that it increases the probability that the mother experience at least one son death by 4.43%, and raises the number of dead sons per mother by 0.074. Particular attention is paid to discuss and address endogeneity issues. We also further investigate the heterogeneity of impact by current age and marriage duration. Findings suggest that we effectively identify the empowerment channel.
    Keywords: Early marriage; Senegal; Fertility; Child Mortality; Women Empowerment; Bargaining Power;
    JEL: J12 J13 I14
    Date: 2013–05
  4. By: Donnet, Sophie; Samson, Adeline
    Abstract: This paper is a survey of existing estimation methods for pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic (PK/PD) models based on stochastic differential equations (SDEs). Most parametric estimation methods proposed for SDEs require high frequency data and are often poorly suited for PK/PD data which are usually sparse. Moreover, PK/PD experiments generally include not a single individual but a group of subjects, leading to a population estimation approach. This review concentrates on estimation methods which have been applied to PK/PD data, for SDEs observed with and without measurement noise, with a standard or a population approach. Besides, the adopted methodologies highly differ depending on the existence or not of an explicit transition density of the SDE solution.
    Keywords: Stochastic differential equations; Pharmacokinetic; Pharmacodynamic; population approach; maximum likelihood estimation; Kalman Filter; EM algorithm; Hermite expansion; Gauss quadrature; Bayesian estimation;
    JEL: C11
    Date: 2013
  5. By: Tubeuf, Sandy; Trannoy, Alain; Jusot, Florence; Bricard, Damien
    Abstract: Purpose: This paper aims to quantify inequalities of opportunities in health in Europe and to assess whether the way the correlation between effort towards health and circumstances empirically matters for the magnitude of inequalities of opportunities. Methodology: This paper considers two alternative normative ways of treating the correlation between effort and circumstances championed by Barry and Roemer, and combine regression analysis with inequality measures to compare inequality of opportunities in health within Europe. This paper uses the Retrospective Survey of SHARELIFE focusing on life histories of European people aged 50 and over. Findings: Our results show considerable inequalities of opportunity in health in Germany, Spain, Italy, Denmark, Greece and Belgium whereas Sweden and Switzerland show low inequalities of opportunities in health. The normative principle considered makes little difference in Austria, France, Czech Republic, Sweden and Switzerland whereas it appears to matter in the Netherlands, Poland, Germany, Spain, Italy, Denmark, Greece and Belgium. Research implications: Our results suggest a strong social and family determinism of lifestyles in the Netherlands, Poland, Germany, Denmark, Belgium and the Mediterranean which emphasized the importance of inequalities of opportunities in health within those countries. In terms of public health and social policies, it appears that reducing social and unhealthy lifestyles reproduction across generations would provide important benefits on health. On the other hand Austria, France, and Czech Republic show high inequalities of opportunities in health mainly driven by social and family background affecting adult health directly, and so would require policies compensating for poorer initial conditions.
    Keywords: Equality of opportunity; Europe; health; inequality decomposition; efforts; circumstances;
    JEL: I18 I11
    Date: 2013–06
  6. By: Franc, Carine; Dumontet, Magali
    Abstract: In any fee for service system (FFS), doctors are incited to increase their activity such that outpatient care supply is strongly linked to private practice income. Thus, studying the private practice income determinants allows predicting doctors’ care provision. We aim first, to identify the effects of determinants on income, second, to study the evolution of these effects along the incomes distribution and third, to emphasize differences between male and female GPs. From an exhaustive database on French General Practitioners’ (GP) working in private practice in 2008, we perform an ordinary least squares regression and a quantile regression for each income determinant. Among others, we consider the tradeoffs within the GP’s household (couple, single, with or without children, spouse's income). The income gap between male and female GPs is 32% in favor of male and we have shown that some determinants acted with different magnitude on incomes of men and women. Another original result is related to the GP’s casemix: a male GP at the upper end of the incomes distribution may be discouraged to accept an additional elderly illustrating a potential limit of the FFS in outpatient care.
    Keywords: General practitioners; income; quantile regressions; gender differences;
    JEL: I11 I18 J30
    Date: 2013–06
  7. By: Goltz, Andreas; Arnault, Louis
    Abstract: This paper focuses on the trade-o between formal and informal care for disabled elderly people living at home in France. Using the French 2008 household Disability - Healthcare data (Handicap Sant e M enages - HSM 2008), we aim to elucidate the e ect of an increase in formal home-care hours on the participation of informal caregivers. We expand on the previous literature, which almost exclusively focuses on the e ect of informal care on formal home care. We estimate a bivariate Tobit model to account for both the censor and the potential endogeneity of our formal home-care vari- able. Our results con rm that crowding out of informal caregivers arises when the elderly dependent receives more hours of formal home care. Nevertheless, the crowding out of informal caregivers that arises when only personal formal home care increases is much weaker. Such crowding out can be interpreted negatively as a renouncement of informal caregivers, but it may also allow some of these caregivers to work more or re-enter the labor market.
    Keywords: Long-term Care; Informal Care; Formal Care; Bivariate Tobit Model; Instrumental Variable;
    JEL: I11 I12 J22
    Date: 2013–06
  8. By: Trannoy, Alain; Tubeuf, Sandy; Jusot, Florence
    Abstract: The way to treat the correlation between circumstances and effort is a central, yet largely neglected issue in the applied literature on inequality of opportunity. This paper adopts three alternative normative ways of treating this correlation championed by Roemer, Barry and Swift and assesses their empirical relevance using survey data. We combine regression analysis with the natural decomposition of the variance to compare the relative contributions of circumstances and efforts to overall health inequality according to the different normative principles. Our results suggest that, in practice, the normative principle on the way to treat the correlation between circumstances and effort makes little difference on the relative contributions of circumstances and efforts to explained health inequality.
    Keywords: equality of opportunity; variance decomposition; circumstances; effort; health; inequality decomposition;
    JEL: I12 D63
    Date: 2013
  9. By: Richard Layard; Dan Chisholm; Vikram Patel; Shekhar Saxena
    Abstract: This paper is a contribution to the second World Happiness Report. It makes five main points. 1. Mental health is the biggest single predictor of life-satisfaction. This is so in the UK, Germany and Australia even if mental health is included with a six-year lag. It explains more of the variance of life-satisfaction in the population of a country than physical health does, and much more than unemployment and income do. Income explains 1% of the variance of life-satisfaction or less. 2. Much the most common forms of mental illness are depression and anxiety disorders. Rigorously defined, these affect about 10% of all the world’s population – and prevalence is similar in rich and poor countries. 3. Depression and anxiety are more common during working age than in later life. They account for a high proportion of disability and impose major economic costs and financial losses to governments worldwide. 4. Yet even in rich countries, under a third of people with diagnosable mental illness are in treatment. 5. Cost-effective treatments exist, with recovery rates of 50% or more. In rich countries treatment is likely to have no net cost to the Exchequer due to savings on welfare benefits and lost taxes. But even in poor countries a reasonable level of coverage could be obtained at a cost of under $2 per head of population per year.
    Keywords: Mental illness, welfare benefits, healthcare costs, life-satisfaction
    JEL: I10 I14 I18
    Date: 2013
  10. By: Sonia Bhalotra; Irma Clots-Figueras
    Abstract: We investigate whether women’s political representation in state legislatures improves public provision of antenatal and early childhood health services in the districts from which they are elected, arguing that the costs of poor services in this domain are disproportionately borne by women. Using several large representative samples of data from India and accounting for potential endogeneity of politician gender and the sample composition of births, we find that a 10 percentage point increase in women’s political representation results in a 2.1 percentage point reduction in neonatal mortality, an outcome that is closely tied to investments in maternal health. Importantly, we are able to probe the underlying mechanisms. We find that politician gender exerts an impact on both the health infrastructure and the information and encouragement that recent studies suggest is important in determining the demand for public health services. Not only are more public health facilities built under women but there is an increase in antenatal care visits, institutional delivery and breastfeeding. Our findings contribute evidence in favour of women’s political representation as an under-utilised tool for addressing infectious disease and death in developing countries.
    Date: 2013–11–13
  11. By: João Medeiros; Christoph Schwierz
    Abstract: This study assesses the relative importance of demographic versus non demographic drivers of health expenditure (HE), and makes long term projections for the HE to GDP ratio. This paper breaks down public HE in its drivers for European Union countries. Baumol's "unbalanced growth model" suggests that low productivity growth sectors, such as health services, when facing an inelastic demand curve result in a rising expenditure to GDP ratio. Although national income and relative prices of health are found to be important determinants of public HE, significant residual growth persists, inter alia, reflecting the impact of omitted variables, such as technological progress, and policies and institutions. Consequently, in order to obtain sensible long term projections, it is necessary to make (arbitrary) assumptions on the future evolution of a time drift/residuals.
    JEL: C53 H51 I12
    Date: 2013–10
  12. By: Barrenho, E; Smith, PC; Miraldo, M
    Date: 2013–10–17
  13. By: Smith, PC; Laudicella, M; Li Donni, P
    Date: 2013–10–17
  14. By: Nitesh Sahay; John Cockburn; Mitu Pathak
    Abstract: Health is considered to be an extremely important component of human welfare. By the time India gained independence in 1947, achievement of good health had become an important national goal in its own right. Nevertheless, a vast public health infrastructure in India comprising of 145,000 Sub-centres, 23,000 Public Health Centres (PHCs) and 3222 Community Health Centres (CHCs) is estimated to be able to cater to only 20% of the Indian population. There have been numerous attempts to understand and analyze the causes underlying the failures of the health policies and thereby to provide meaningful solutions. While most of the earlier attempts to understand health look at the role of public and private institutions in the provision of health care, the focus of this paper is to identify the role that households play in determining their health status and the macroeconomic effects this decision can generate. The paper uses a CGE framework to simulate the effects of complete tariff liberalization in the presence / partial withdrawal / complete absence of health subsidy. Among major conclusions, this paper finds that complete subsidization of health reduces overall disparity by favoring rural households over urban. Withdrawal of health subsidy leads to domestic re-allocation of poverty pushing down the wage rates in agricultural sector, the main stay of rural households.
    Keywords: Health, CGE, Health capital, Health Models, Public Health, Household Production Function
    JEL: D58 D13 C68 I12 I15 I18
    Date: 2013
  15. By: Wilfredo Lim; Carol V. Irvin
    Abstract: This report looks at short-term outcomes for people in the Money Follows the Person (MFP) demonstration. It found nursing home residents who had low care needs and transitioned to community living, through MFP or by other means, were slightly more likely to remain in the community and avoid reinstitutionalization than those with higher care needs.
    Keywords: Level of Care , reinstitutionalization, former nursing home residents, Money Follows the Person
    JEL: I
    Date: 2013–09–30
  16. By: Leslie Foster; Adam Dunn; Maggie Colby
    Keywords: Health E App, Children's Health Care Coverage, California, Health
    JEL: I
    Date: 2013–10–30
  17. By: Carol V. Irvin; Noelle Denny-Brown; Matthew Kehn; Rebecca Sweetland Lester; Debra Lipson; Wilfredo Lim; Jessica Ross; Alex Bohl; Victoria Peebles; Samuel Simon; Bailey Orshan; Susan R. Williams; Eric Morris; Christal Stone
    Abstract: The fourth annual report of the Money Follows the Person (MFP) Evaluation includes analyses on (1) program implementation for the first five years; (2) descriptions of MFP participants and costs and types of services received; (3) trend analyses to detect shifts in the balance of state long-term care systems that may have occurred; and (4) an assessment of how participant quality of life changes after they leave the program.
    Keywords: MFP, Money Follows the Person, Long-Term Care, Disability
    JEL: I
    Date: 2013–10–15
  18. By: Marsha Gold; Winnie Wang; Julia Paradise
    Keywords: Care Transitions, Medicaid, North Carolina, Health
    JEL: I
    Date: 2013–10–30
  19. By: Joseph S. Zickafoose; Lisa R. DeCamp; Lisa A. Prosser
    Keywords: Emergency Departments, Pediatric Care, Parent Survey, Health
    JEL: I
    Date: 2013–11–30
  20. By: Maria Kuecken (Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne - Paris School of Economics); Josselin Thuilliez (Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne - Paris School of Economics); Marie-Anne Valfort (Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne - Paris School of Economics)
    Abstract: We examine the middle-run effects of the Global Fund's malaria control programs on the educational attainment of primary schoolchildren in Sub-Saharan Africa. Using a quasi-experimental approach, we exploit geographic variation in pre-campaign malaria prevalence (malaria ecology) and variation in exogenous exposure to the timing and expenditure of malaria control campaigns, based on individuals' years of birth and year surveyed. In a large majority of countries (14 of 22), we find that the program led to substantial increases in years of schooling and grade level as well as reductions in schooling delay. Moreover, although by and large positive, we find that the marginal returns of the Global Fund disbursements in terms of educational outcomes are decreasing. Our findings, which are robust to both the instrumentation of ecology and use of alternative ecology measures, have important policy implications on the value for money of malaria control efforts.
    Keywords: Malaria, Sub-Saharan Africa, education, quasi-experimental.
    JEL: I15 I21 O19 O55
    Date: 2013–10
  21. By: Kevin Lang; Russell Weinstein
    Abstract: Using data from three cycles of the National Survey of Family Growth, we investigate whether there were adverse consequences of teenage childbearing in the 1950s and 1960s, when most abortions were illegal, and access to the pill was limited. We find negative effects of teen motherhood on the likelihood of obtaining at least 12 years of education and on the number of marriages. We find positive effects of teen motherhood on family income, and, unsurprisingly, on the number of children. These effects are heterogeneous by predicted education. For those with high levels of predicted education, giving birth does not affect educational attainment but increases the probability of being divorced. For those predicted to be on the margin of high school completion, giving birth has strong negative effects on 12th grade completion and age at first marriage, while increasing the probability of never having married. In general, for less advantaged teens, motherhood appears to have increased expected family income but also the risk of not graduating from high school and never marrying. We find surprisingly little evidence that births affected teens conceiving pre- and post-marriage differently.
    JEL: I31 J12 J13
    Date: 2013–11
  22. By: Pieters, A.J.H.M. (Tilburg University)
    Abstract: This research aims to contribute to the development of theory regarding inter-organizational designs for these care-cure conditions through a combination of case study research and simulation. The case setting chosen is that of perinatal care in the Netherlands. The research consists of three phases and combines both qualitative and quantitative methods (mixed methods approach). The first phase focuses on what goes wrong in Dutch perinatal care (what-question). The second phase focuses on understanding why it is going wrong (why-question). The third phase focuses on gaining insight into how Dutch perinatal care can be improved, on what inter-organizational design would work best for Dutch perinatal care (how-question). As such, this research combines three layers of a healthcare system: firstly, the structure of the system, the inter-organizational design, secondly, the inter-organizational dynamics, such as collaboration and trust between organizations and professionals, and thirdly, the flow of patients between organizations.
    Date: 2013
  23. By: Ugur, Z.B. (Tilburg University)
    Abstract: Abstract: Zeynep’s research interests are mainly in the field of health and labor economics. In this thesis, she explores a broad range of topics within the domain of the economics of gender, health and happiness. The first chapter provides the motivations for the studies and summarizes the main findings. The second chapter documents differences in educational attainment, labor market outcomes and childbearing among women by their use of headscarves and investigates the impact of the headscarf ban in Turkey on women’s educational attainment, labor force participation and childbearing decisions. In Chapter 3, she explores the relationship between presumed consent legislation and various organ donation indicators such as willingness to donate one’s organs, organ donation card holding, actual organ donation rates and kidney transplantation rates. The last chapter looks at the relationship between pro-social behavior and subjective wellbeing and tries to quantify the happiness effect of donating in the Netherlands.
    Date: 2013
  24. By: Lee, Suejin (Korea University); Lim, Jae-Young (Korea University); Lee, Hyun-Hoon (Kangwon National University); Park, Cyn-Young (Asian Development Bank)
    Abstract: High food prices can be an immediate threat to household food security, undermining population health, retarding human development, and lowering labor productivity for the economy in the long term. We employ a panel dataset covering 63 developing countries from 2001 to 2010 to make a comprehensive assessment of the effects of food price inflation and volatility on population health measured by infant mortality rate, child mortality rate, and the prevalence of undernourishment. We find that rising food prices have a significant and adverse effect on all three health indicators in developing countries. Furthermore, the impact of food prices is severer in the least developing countries although the effect is moderated in countries with a greater share of agriculture in gross domestic product.
    Keywords: food price; health; food security
    JEL: I15 I18 I19 Q18
    Date: 2013–08–29
  25. By: Cinzia Di Novi (Department of Economics, University Of Venice Cà Foscari); Elenka Brenna (Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Dipartimento di Economia e Finanza)
    Abstract: In the last decades, both the lengthening of life expectancy and an accentuated decline in birth rates have reduced the consistency of the younger generational cohorts. Due to ageing population, the burdens of caregiving are projected to intensify in the next quarter of the century in Europe, especially for mature women. This paper investigates the impact of the provision of constant care for elderly parents on the mental health of adult daughters, between the ages of 50 and 65, living in different European countries. Data is collected from the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE). Information on mental health status is provided by Euro-D depression scale, a standardized measure of depression employed across European countries. We focus on differences in the effects according to a North–South gradient: we test whether the relationship between informal caregiving and mental health differs across European macro- regions. Our results reveal the presence of a North-South gradient in the effect of caring on women’s mental health.
    Keywords: caregiver burden, depression, parent care, LTC systems, mature women.
    JEL: I10 I12 D10
    Date: 2013
  26. By: Miguel Portela; Paul Schweinzer
    Abstract: We attempt to answer a simple empirical question: does having children make a parent live longer? The hypothesis we offer is that a parent's immune system is refreshed by a child's infections at a time when their own protection starts wearing thin. With the boosted immune system, the parent has a better chance to fend off whatever infections might strike when old and weak. Thus, parenthood is rewarded in individual terms. Using the Office for National Statistics Longitudinal Study (ONS-LS) data set following one percent of the population of England and Wales along four census waves 1971, 1981, 1991, and 2001, we are unable to reject this hypothesis. By contrast, we find in our key result that women with children have a roughly 8% higher survival probability of infections than women without children.
    Keywords: Longevity, Infectious diseases, Family
    JEL: I1 J1 R2
    Date: 2013–11
  27. By: Chad Cotti (University of Connecticut); Richard A. Dunn (Texas A&M University); Nathan Tefft (University of Washington)
    Abstract: We investigate how risky health behaviors and self - reported health vary with the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) and during stock market crashes. Because stock market indices are leading indicators of economic performance, this research contributes to our understanding of the macroeconomic determinants of health. Existing studies typically rely on the unemployment rate to proxy for economic performance, but this measure captures only one of many channels through which the economic environment may influence individual health decisions. We find that large, negative monthly DJIA returns, decreases in the level of the DJIA, and stock market crashes are widely associated with worsening self-reported mental health and more cigarette smoking, binge drinking, and fatal car accidents involving alcohol. These results are consistent with predictions from rational addiction models and have implications for research on the association between consumption and stock prices.
    Keywords: stock market, risky health behaviors, business cycle, alcohol, cigarettes
    JEL: I1 E32 G1
    Date: 2013–06
  28. By: Scott Adams (University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee); Chad Cotti (University of Connecticut); Nathan Tefft (University of Washington)
    Abstract: We present evidence from the Fatality Analysis Reporting System and Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System that shows increased seat-belt use following the enactment of stricter BAC thresholds in states where seat-belt laws are primarily enforced. This suggests that inebriated drivers may use their seat-belts more judiciously to avoid being identified as a drunk driver by law enforcement. The interactive effect of stricter drunk driving laws and primary seat-belt laws are also shown to be more effective than either law passed in isolation in terms of reducing traffic fatalities.
    Keywords: seatbelts, drunk driving
    JEL: K4 I18
    Date: 2013–10
  29. By: Chad Cotti (University of Connecticut); Richard A. Dunn (Texas A&M University); Nathan Tefft (University of Washington)
    Abstract: In this study, we examine how the probability of driving after a binge - drinking episode varies with the location of consumption and type of alcohol consumed. We also investigate the relationship between the location of alcohol purchase and the number of alcohol-related fatal motor vehicle crashes. We find that binge-drinkers are significantly more likely to drive after consuming alcohol at establishments that sell alcohol for on-premises consumption, e.g., from bars or restaurants, particularly after drinking beer. Further, per capita sales of alcohol for off-premises consumption are unrelated to the rate of alcohol- related fatal motor ve hicle crashes . When disaggregating alcohol types, per capita sales of beer for off - premises consumption are negatively associated with the rate of alcohol-related fatal motor vehicle crashes. In contrast, total per capita sales of alcohol from all establishments (on- and off-premises) are positively related to the rate of alcohol-related fatal motor vehicle crashes and the magnitude of this relationship is strongest for beer sales. Thus, policies that shift consumption away from bars and restaurants could lead to a decline in the number of motor vehicle crashes.
    Keywords: Alcohol Drinking, Motor Vehicles, Economics, Taxes
    Date: 2013–11

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