nep-hea New Economics Papers
on Health Economics
Issue of 2022‒04‒11
28 papers chosen by
Nicolas R. Ziebarth
Cornell University

  1. Why Do Couples and Singles Save During Retirement? By Mariacristina De Nardi; Eric French; John Bailey Jones; Rory McGee
  2. Why Do Temporary Workers Have Higher Disability Insurance Risks Than Permanent Workers? By Pierre Koning; Paul Muller; Roger Prudon
  3. A health economic theory of occupational choice, aging, and longevity By Strulik, Holger
  4. The Female Happiness Paradox By David G. Blanchflower; Alex Bryson
  5. Revisiting the Effect of Education on Later Life Health By Theodore F. Figinski; Alicia Lloro; Avinash Moorthy
  6. Does capping social security harm health? A natural experiment in the UK By Reeves, Aaron; Fransham, Mark; Stewart, Kitty; Patrick, Ruth
  7. The Effect of Housing First Programs on Future Homelessness and Socioeconomic Outcomes By Elior Cohen
  8. The Long-Term Effects of Early-Life Pollution Exposure: Evidence from the London Smog By Stephanie von Hinke; Emil Sorensen
  9. This is Air: The "Non-Health" Effects of Air Pollution By Sandra Aguilar-Gomez; Holt Dwyer; Joshua S. Graff Zivin; Matthew J. Neidell
  10. Hidden hazards and Screening Policy : Predicting Undetected Lead Exposure in Illinois Using Machine Learning By Abbasi, Ali; Gazze, Ludovica; Pals, Bridget
  11. Is Survival a Luxury Good? Income Elasticity of the Value per Statistical Life By Hammitt, James K.; Liu, Jin-Tan; Liu, Jin-Long
  12. How Does Children's Sex Affect Parental Sex Preference: Preference Adaptation and Learning By Qianqian Shang; Quanbao Jiang; Yongkun Yin
  13. Pro-birth policies, missions and fertility : historical evidence from Congo By Catherine Guirkinger; Paola Villar
  14. Proximity to health care centres and service intake: The case of Community Clinics in Bangladesh. By Syed Hasan; Tasnima Akter; Musharrat Jahan; Ashraf Dewan
  15. Determinants of health insurance enrollment and health expenditure in Ghana: An empirical analysis By Adjei-Mantey, Kwame; Yuji Horioka, Charles
  16. Association between Time Use Behaviour and Health and Well Being among Elderly: Evidence from the Longitudinal Ageing Study of India By Suresh Sharma; Jyoti Chaudhary
  17. A measure of well-being efficiency based on the World Happiness Report By Sarracino, Francesco; O'Connor, Kelsey J.
  18. New historical estimates of the human development index By Luis Bertola; Laura Gatti
  19. Estimating Child Development Index in India at the District Level - A Methodology. By Mathur, Ritu; Jaitli, Namrata; Amarnath HK,
  20. An Epidemic Compartment Model for Economic Policy Directions for Managing Future Pandemic By Zachariah Sinkala; Vajira Manathunga; Bichaka Fayissa
  21. Facing Displacement and a Global Pandemic: Evidence from a Fragile State By Michele Di Maio; Francisco Fasani; Valerio Leone Sciabolazza; Vasco Molini
  22. The politicized pandemic: Ideological polarization and the behavioral response to COVID-19 By Grimalda, Gianluca; Murtin, Fabrice; Pipke, David; Putterman, Louis G.; Sutter, Matthias
  23. COVID-19 and Voter Turnout in Europe and in Korea By JOE, Dong-Hee
  24. An overview of effects of COVID-19 on mobility and lifestyle: 18 months since the outbreak By André de Palma; Shaghayegh Vosough; Feixiong Liao
  25. Policy incentives and determinants of citizens' COVID-19 vaccination motives By Keser, Claudia; Rau, Holger A.
  26. Covid-19 and the Dilemma of the Developing Countries By Hinh T. Dinh
  27. How to reduce vaccination hesitancy? The relevance of evidence and its communicator By Eger, Jens; Kaplan, Lennart; Sternberg, Henrike
  28. Building Mass Support for Global Pandemic Recovery Efforts in the United States By Gautam Nair; Kyle Peyton

  1. By: Mariacristina De Nardi (College of Liberal Arts, University of Minnesota); Eric French (University of Cambridge); John Bailey Jones (Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond); Rory McGee (University of Western Ontario)
    Abstract: While the savings of retired singles tend to fall with age, those of retired couples tend to rise. We estimate a rich model of retired singles and couples with bequest motives and uncertain longevity and medical expenses. Our estimates imply that while medical expenses are an important driver of the savings of middle-income singles, bequest motives matter for couples and high-income singles, and generate transfers to non-spousal heirs whenever a household member dies. The interaction of medical expenses and bequest motives is a crucial determinant of savings for all retirees. Hence, to understand savings, it is important to model household structure, medical expenses, and bequest motives.
    Date: 2021
  2. By: Pierre Koning (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam); Paul Muller (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam); Roger Prudon (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam)
    Abstract: Workers with fixed-term contracts typically have worse health than workers with permanent contracts. We show that these differences in health translate into a substantially higher (30%) risk of applying for disability insurance (DI) in the Netherlands. Using unique administrative data on health and labor market outcomes of all employees in the Netherlands, we decompose this differential into: (i) selection of workers types into fixed-term contracts; (ii) the causal impact of temporary work conditions on worker health; (iii) the impact of differential employer incentives to reintegrate ill workers; and (iv) the differential impact of labor market prospects on the decision to apply for DI benefits. We find that selection actually masks part of the DI risk premium, whereas the causal impact of temporary work conditions on worker health is limited. At the same time, the differences in employer commitment during illness and differences in labor market prospects between fixed-term and permanent workers jointly explain more than 80% of the higher DI risk.
    Keywords: Disability Insurance, Temporary Work, Employer Incentives, Worker Health
    JEL: H53 J08 I1
    Date: 2022–03–22
  3. By: Strulik, Holger
    Abstract: In this paper, I propose a life cycle model of occupational choice with endogenous health behavior, aging, and longevity. Health-demanding work leads to a faster accumulation of health deficits and is remunerated with a hazard markup on wages. Health deficit accumulation is also influenced by unhealthy consumption and health care expenditure. I calibrate the model for a 20 year old average American in 2010 and show the following results, among others. Health-demanding work is ceteris paribus preferred by male, young, and healthy individuals with a relatively low level of education. Health demanding work has a negligible effect on health behavior because income and health investment effects largely offset each other, implying that health effects can be attributed almost fully to the direct health burden of work. Better medical technology induces low-skilled individuals to spend a greater part of their life in health-demanding work and thus increases the health gradient of education. High wealth endowments protect against unhealthy occupational choices. I show robustness of the results in an extension of the model with regard to endogenous retirement.
    Keywords: occupational choice,health behavior,health deficits,aging,longevity,retirement
    JEL: D15 I10 I12 J24 J26
    Date: 2022
  4. By: David G. Blanchflower (Bruce V. Rauner Professor of Economics, Dartmouth College, Adam Smith Business School, University of Glasgow; NBER and Bloomberg); Alex Bryson (University College London; IZA, Bonn; NIESR, London)
    Abstract: Using data across countries and over time we show that women are unhappier than men in unhappiness and negative affect equations, irrespective of the measure used – anxiety, depression, fearfulness, sadness, loneliness, anger – and they have more days with bad mental health and more restless sleep. Women are also less satisfied with many aspects of their lives such as democracy, the economy, the state of education and health services. They are also less happy in the moment in terms of peace and calm, cheerfulness, feeling active, vigorous, fresh and rested. However, prior evidence on gender differences in happiness and life satisfaction is less clear cut. Differences vary over time, location, and with model specification and the inclusion of controls especially marital status. We also show that there are significant variations by month in happiness data regarding whether males are happier than females but find little variation by month in unhappiness data. It matters which months are sampled when measuring positive affect but not with negative affect. These monthly data reveal that women’s happiness was more adversely affected by the COVID shock than men’s, but also that women’s happiness rebounded more quickly suggesting resilience. As a result, we now find strong evidence that males have higher levels of both happiness and life satisfaction in recent years even before the onset of pandemic. As in the past they continue to have lower levels of unhappiness. A detailed analysis of several data files, with various metrics, for the UK confirms that men now are happier than women.
    Keywords: happiness; subjective wellbeing; life satisfaction; gender
    JEL: J16 I31
    Date: 2022–04–01
  5. By: Theodore F. Figinski; Alicia Lloro; Avinash Moorthy
    Abstract: We provide new evidence on the effect of education on later life health. Using variation in state compulsory schooling laws, we examine education's effect on a range of outcomes encompassing physical health, decision-making, and life expectancy. We employ under-utilized Health and Retirement Study data linked to restricted geographic identifiers, allowing us to match individuals more accurately to compulsory schooling laws. While positively related to educational attainment, compulsory schooling laws have no significant effect on later life health outcomes. Our results suggest that increased educational attainment has no significant causal effect on health.
    Keywords: Compulsory school attendance laws; Returns to education; Human capital; Health; Education policy
    JEL: H75 I12 I26 I28 J24
    Date: 2022–02–23
  6. By: Reeves, Aaron; Fransham, Mark; Stewart, Kitty; Patrick, Ruth
    Abstract: In this paper, we examine the mental health effects of lowering the UK's benefit cap in 2016. This policy limits the total amount a household with no-one in full-time employment can receive in social security. We treat the reduction in the cap as a natural policy experiment, comparing those at risk of being capped and those who were not, and examining the risk of experiencing poor mental health both before and after the cap was lowered. Drawing on data from ~900,000 individuals, we find that the prevalence of depression or anxiety among those at risk of being capped increased by 2.6 percentage points (95% confidence interval: 1.33–3.88) compared with those at a low risk of being capped. Capping social security may increase the risk of mental ill health and could have the unintended consequence of pushing out-of-work people even further away from the labour market.
    Keywords: welfare reform; mental health; benefit cap; social security; DP190101188; WEL/43806; 220206/Z/20/Z
    JEL: R14 J01
    Date: 2021–09–08
  7. By: Elior Cohen
    Abstract: Housing First programs provide housing assistance without preconditions for homeless individuals as a platform for rehabilitation. Despite the programs’ increasing popularity, limited evidence exists on their effects on socioeconomic outcomes. Using a novel dataset combining administrative records from multiple public agencies in Los Angeles County and a random case manager assignment design, I estimate that Housing First assistance reduces homelessness and crime, increases income and employment, and does not have a detectable effect on healthcare utilization. Cost-benefit analysis implies that these potential savings offset program costs within 18 months. These findings demonstrate that Housing First can be rehabilitative and cost-effective.
    Keywords: Homelessness; Housing First; Case managers
    JEL: H42 I38 J18
    Date: 2022–03–29
  8. By: Stephanie von Hinke; Emil Sorensen
    Abstract: This paper uses a large UK cohort to investigate the impact of early-life pollution exposure on individuals' human capital and health outcomes in older age. We compare individuals who were exposed to the London smog in December 1952 whilst in utero or in infancy to those born after the smog and those born at the same time but in unaffected areas. We found that those exposed to the smog have substantially lower fluid intelligence and worse respiratory health, with some evidence of a reduction in years of schooling.
    Date: 2022–02–18
  9. By: Sandra Aguilar-Gomez; Holt Dwyer; Joshua S. Graff Zivin; Matthew J. Neidell
    Abstract: A robust body of evidence shows that air pollution exposure is detrimental to health outcomes, often measured as deaths and hospitalizations. This literature has focused less on subclinical channels that nonetheless impact behavior, performance, and skills. This article reviews the economic research investigating the causal effects of pollution on "non-health" endpoints, including labor productivity, cognitive performance, and multiple forms of decision making. Subclinical effects of pollution can be more challenging to observe than formal health care encounters but may be more pervasive if they affect otherwise healthy people. The wide variety of possible impacts of pollution should be informed by plausible mechanisms and require appropriate hypothesis testing to limit false discovery. Finally, any detected effects of pollution, both in the short and long run, may be dampened by costly efforts to avoid exposure ex-ante and remediate its impacts ex-post; these costs must be considered for a full welfare analysis
    JEL: I12 I31 J22 J24 Q51 Q53
    Date: 2022–03
  10. By: Abbasi, Ali (Department of Surgery, University of California San Francisco); Gazze, Ludovica (Department of Economics, University of Warwick); Pals, Bridget (School of Law, New York University)
    Abstract: Lead exposure remains a significant threat to children’s health despite decades of policies aimed at getting the lead out of homes and neighborhoods. Generally, lead hazards are identified through inspections triggered by high blood lead levels (BLLs) in children. Yet, it is unclear how best to screen children for lead exposure to balance the costs of screening and the potential benefits of early detection, treatment, and lead hazard removal. While some states require universal screening, others employ a targeted approach, but no regime achieves 100% compliance. We estimate the extent and geographic distribution of undetected lead poisoning in Illinois. We then compare the estimated detection rate of a universal screening program to the current targeted screening policy under different compliance levels. To do so, we link 2010-2016 Illinois lead test records to 2010-2014 birth records, demographics, and housing data. We train a random forest classifier that predicts the likelihood a child has a BLL above 5µg/dL. We estimate that 10,613 untested children had a BLL≥5µg/dL in addition to the 18,115 detected cases. Due to the unequal spatial distribution of lead hazards, 60% of these undetected cases should have been screened under the current policy, suggesting limited benefits from universal screening.
    Keywords: Lead Poisoning ; Environmental Health ; Screening
    Date: 2022
  11. By: Hammitt, James K.; Liu, Jin-Tan; Liu, Jin-Long
    Abstract: The value of a change in mortality risk is conventionally described by the marginal rate of substitution between income and mortality risk—the value per statistical life (VSL). The income elasticity of VSL is important for estimating how the value of mortality risk varies with time (for evaluating programs with long-lived effects) and across populations with different income levels (for evaluating programs with international consequences). Previous estimates of income elasticity based on meta-analysis of wage-differential studies and cross-sectional comparisons in stated-preference studies suggest values between about one-half and one. We present new estimates based on a 16-year series of wage-differential estimates in Taiwan. Between 1982 and 1997, estimated VSL increased by a factor of five while household labor earnings increased by 60 percent, per capita GDP increased two-and-a-half fold, and the occupational fatality rate in manufacturing and service industries decreased by half. Comparing the growth of VSL with that of household income implies the income elasticity is between about two and five but this estimate may be biased by the endogeneity of VSL, which is affected by workers’ job choices. Using a two-stage approach to control for endogeneity yields estimates of the income elasticity of VSL between two-thirds and one, consistent with estimates from other approaches.
    Date: 2022–03–18
  12. By: Qianqian Shang (CEMFI, Centro de Estudios Monetarios y Financieros); Quanbao Jiang (Xi'an Jiaotong University); Yongkun Yin (CEMFI, Centro de Estudios Monetarios y Financieros)
    Abstract: This study examines the effects of children's sex on women's sex preference and investigates the underlying mechanisms. Women's sex preference is measured by the proportion of sons and daughters they would like to have. Based on data of a national representative sample of Peruvian women in the Demographic and Health Survey, we find that if the first child is a daughter, the ideal proportion of sons will be lower by 6.2 percentage points (pp), and the ideal proportion of daughters will be higher by 5.3 pp. Moreover, if the first two children are daughters, the ideal proportion of sons will be lower by 8.9 pp, and the ideal proportion of daughters will be higher by 6.2 pp. Further analysis shows that the effects of the sex of the first child are stronger for women with only one child than for women with multiple children and that the effects of having a daughter depend on her birth order, suggesting that both preference adaptation and learning play important roles in generating the effects of children's sex on parental sex preference.
    Keywords: Sex of children, sex preference, preference adaptation, learning.
    JEL: D19 J13 J16
    Date: 2022–02
  13. By: Catherine Guirkinger (Center for Research in the Economics of Development, University of Namur); Paola Villar
    Abstract: Did colonial powers shape fertility patterns in their colonies? We investigate this question in the context of the Belgian Congo. Starting in the late 1920s, several colonial powers in Africa feared depopulation of their colonies and designed pro-birth policies. The Belgian state heavily relied on Catholic nuns to implement these policies in the Congo. Using a demographic survey conducted in the 1970s in seven major cities, we recovered the individual birth calendars of 30,000 women born between 1900 and 1948, under colonial rule. In addition we digitized high-quality territory level information on fertility by cohort in the 1950s. We rely on unique historical and archival material to reconstruct temporal and geographic heterogeneity in exposure to missionary presence and the type of activities performed at the station level. We find a positive effect of Catholic nuns on fertility. In contrast, Catholic male missionaries have no detectable impact on fertility and Protestant missionaries have a clear negative impact. In terms of mechanisms, we argue that progress in general health are unlikely to explain, alone, the rise in fertility. Another likely channel was the promotion of an ideal of domesticity where women are confined to their role of mother and wife. Finally, using Demographic and Health Survey data, we find some trace of colonial mission’s influence on fertility patterns today.
    Date: 2022–03
  14. By: Syed Hasan (School of Economics and Finance, Massey University, Palmerston North); Tasnima Akter (Faculty of Health, University of Technology Sydney, Australia); Musharrat Jahan (UNICEF, Bangladesh); Ashraf Dewan (School of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Curtin University, Australia)
    Abstract: We investigate how distance from heath centres affects service intake for women and children. Relying on five rounds of recent nationally representative demographic and health survey data from Bangladesh, our logistic regression analyses reveal that proximity to health centres barely affects the intake of health care services for women and children, even in the country’s rural areas. Interestingly, this indicates that the newly established Community Clinics have not significantly contributed to the country’s intake of health care services. The low service intake may result from their poor standard at the local health centres indicating that improving the service quality can help Bangladesh in raising the intake of health care services. Other ways to encourage people, like mandating ANC and PNC visits and vaccination and the introduction of referral services, can also improve the health service intake rate.
    Keywords: Health service delivery, Community Clinics, Health centre’s proximity, Bangladesh
    JEL: I12 I18 H51
    Date: 2022
  15. By: Adjei-Mantey, Kwame; Yuji Horioka, Charles
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the determinants of health insurance enrollment and health expenditure in Ghana using micro data from wave 7 of the Ghana Living Standards Survey (GLSS 7) with emphasis on the role of risk preferences and the availability of health facilities in one’s own community, neither of which has been emphasized in the previous literature on this topic. It is possible to analyze the determinants of health insurance enrollment in Ghana because its public health insurance system (the National Health Insurance Scheme or NHIS) is, in theory, mandatory, but is, in actual practice, voluntary, with only about 40% of the population enrolled in the scheme. Our empirical findings show that risk preferences have a significant impact on health insurance enrollment, with risk averse individuals being significantly more likely than other households to enroll in health insurance, as one would expect. Moreover, our findings also show that very poor households are significantly more likely to enroll in health insurance than other households, perhaps because they are exempt from paying premiums for health insurance. This finding suggests that NHIS is achieving its intended objective of increasing the poor’s access to health care. Finally, our findings also show that the availability of health facilities in one’s own community significantly decreases expenditures on health care, which underscores the importance of ensuring an equitable spatial distribution of health facilities throughout the country.
    Keywords: Ghana, health expenditure, health facilities, health insurance, medical insurance, risk preferences, D11, D12, D81, I12, I13
    Date: 2022–02
  16. By: Suresh Sharma; Jyoti Chaudhary (Institute of Economic Growth, Delhi University, Delhi)
    Abstract: Ageing is an inevitable demographic process occurring globally. Coming decades are projected to see a substantial increase in the elderly population and with rise in their number, the social, economic and health policy landscape for the elderly would also need upgradation in response to their needs. Thus identifying the drivers of health and well-being in elderly is essential. One such potential driver of health could be the daily routine of the elderly which focuses on the nature of activities being performed by them. Utilizing time use data from the Longitudinal Ageing Study of India (LASI), we examine the time allocation of the elderly, looking into how much time the elderly spend on active participation and how this allocation varies according to their socio-economic and demographic context. We further explore the association between self-rated health, wellbeing and daily activity engagement decisions of the elderly. The results from the analysis provide insight into activity engagement choices of the elderly across varying socio-economic classes. Time spent in working/volunteering and in exercising was found to have significant positive association with health and well-being indicators. Our results also show that the gender difference in nature of time utilisation by elderly is pervasive. For ageing to be successful, an active daily schedule for elderly needs to become a key concept of the social policy. Building employment opportunities for elderly and considering increasing the retirement age in a phased manner would not only lead to financial independence but also contribute to better health and well-being among them. Setting up community elderly associations aimed at teaching and promoting health enhancing activities among elderly can be considered. Length: 18 pages
    Keywords: Elderly, Time-Use Data, Health & Wellbeing, Policy
    JEL: E52 G12
    Date: 2022–02–01
  17. By: Sarracino, Francesco; O'Connor, Kelsey J.
    Abstract: We propose a measure of well-being efficiency to assess countries' ability to transform inputs into subjective well-being (Cantril ladder). We use the six inputs (real GDP per capita, healthy life expectancy, social support, freedom of choice, absence of corruption, and generosity) identified in the World Happiness Reports and apply Data Envelopment Analysis to a sample of 126 countries. Efficiency scores reveal that high ranking subjective well-being countries, such as the Nordics, are not strictly the most efficient ones. Also, the scores are uncorrelated with economic efficiency. This means that the implicit assumption that economic efficiency promotes well-being is not supported. Well-being efficiency can be improved by changing the amount (scale) or composition of inputs and their use (technical efficiency). For instance countries with lower unemployment, and greater healthy life expectancy and optimism are more efficient.
    Keywords: subjective well-being,World Happiness Report,efficiency,Data Envelopment Analysis
    JEL: I31 E23 D60 O47 O15
    Date: 2022
  18. By: Luis Bertola (Programa de Historia Económica y Social, Facultad de Ciencias Sociales, Universidad de la República); Laura Gatti (Programa de Historia Económica y Social, Facultad de Ciencias Sociales, Universidad de la República)
    Abstract: This paper discusses different alternatives to construct the conventional Historical Human Development Index that considers three dimensions: income, health,and education. We discuss the outcome of different models in terms of aggregated improvements in human development, the rankings of performance, relative growth, the contributions to performance of the different dimensions, and the tradeoffs between the three dimensions. The purpose of the paper is to propose an index that we consider better fits historical development and that provides the less possible gaps in the tradeoffs between the different components of the index. Such an index can be considered the best proxy on which to base policy recommendations. The paper works with a sample of 18 countries of seven regions for 1900-2010.
    Keywords: human development, tradeoffs, convergence, income, education, health
    JEL: E01 I15 I25 I31 N10
    Date: 2021–07
  19. By: Mathur, Ritu; Jaitli, Namrata (Policy Programme Impact, Save the Children India); Amarnath HK, (National Institute of Public Finance and Policy)
    Abstract: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development calls for transforming our world and working towards the future we want. The future we want will, to a large extent, be driven by the youth and the children of today. The survival and development of children to their full potential is essential for building a peaceful, prosperous and sustainable planet. Sustainable development starts with investing in each child. The rights of the child to survival and development, non-discrimination and freedom from all forms of violence are critical for building strong and harmonious communities. For India, it is particularly important to invest in children now. As per the Economic Survey 2018-19, India's demographic dividend will peak around 2041, when the population share of working-age (20-59 years) is expected to hit 59 per cent. The Government of India has been focussing on building human capital through investing in education for all, healthcare and skilling. Any slip-up will lead to sub-optimal leveraging of the demographic dividend with severe socio-economic consequences. There are vast inter-State and intra-State differentials in the status of children. It is important to be aware of regions and districts that do not fare as well as others to facilitate appropriate prioritisation of resources. A first step in this direction is to be able to assess the status of children for all the districts of the country on the basis of globally accepted methodology. This paper uses the methodologies adopted by Save the Children for two of its global indices for ranking countries on the status of children, adapts it to the India context proposing an India Child Development Index (ICDI).
    Keywords: Children ; Child Development Index ; district level estimation ; district level data ; SDG ; Save the Children
    Date: 2022–02
  20. By: Zachariah Sinkala; Vajira Manathunga; Bichaka Fayissa
    Abstract: In this research, we develop a framework to analyze the interaction between the economy and the Covid-19 pandemic using an extension of SIR epidemic model. At the outset, we assume there are two health related investments including general medical expenditures and the other for a direct investment for controlling the pandemic. We incorporate the learning dynamics associated with the management of the virus into our model. Given that the labor force in a society depends on the state of the epidemic, we allow birth, death, and vaccination to occur in our model and assume labor force consists of the susceptible, vaccinated, and recovered individuals. We also assume parameters in our epidemic compartmental model depend on investment amount for directly controlling the epidemic, the health stock of individual representative agents in the society, and the knowledge or learning about the epidemic in the community. By controlling consumption, the general medical expenditure, and the direct investment of funds for controlling the epidemic, we optimize the utility realized by the representative individuals because of consumption. This problem is nontrivial since the disease dynamics results in a non-convex optimization problem.
    Date: 2022–02
  21. By: Michele Di Maio (Michele Di Maio); Francisco Fasani (Francisco Fasani); Valerio Leone Sciabolazza (Valerio Leone Sciabolazza); Vasco Molini (Vasco Molini)
    Abstract: We use novel survey data to assess the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on the Libyan population. In our sample, 9.5% of respondents report that a household member has been infected by COVID 19, while 24.7% of them have suffered economic damages and 14.6% have experienced negative health effects due to the pandemic. Our analysis focuses on the differences between IDPs and non-displaced individuals, controlling for individuals and household characteristics, geo-localized measures of economic activity and conflict intensity. Displaced individuals do not experience higher incidence of COVID-19 relative to comparable non-displaced individuals, but are about 60% more likely than non-displaced respondents to report negative economic and health impacts caused by the pandemic. Our results suggest that the larger damages suffered by IDPs can be explained by their weaker economic status - which leads to more food insecurity and indebtedness - and by the discrimination they face in accessing health care.
    Keywords: Internally Displaced Persons, COVID-19, Debt, Health, Forced Migration, Conflict, Libya
    JEL: F22 J61 K37
    Date: 2022–03
  22. By: Grimalda, Gianluca; Murtin, Fabrice; Pipke, David; Putterman, Louis G.; Sutter, Matthias
    Abstract: We investigate the relationship between political attitudes and prosociality in a survey of a representative sample of the U.S. population during the first summer of the COVID-19 pandemic. We find that an experimental measure of prosociality correlates positively with adherence to protective behaviors. Liberal political ideology predicts higher levels of protective behavior than conservative ideology, independently of the differences in prosociality across the two groups. Differences between liberals and conservatives are up to 4.4 times smaller in their behavior than in judging the government's crisis management. This result suggests that U.S. Americans are more polarized on ideological than behavioral grounds.
    Keywords: Polarization,Ideology,Trust in politicians,COVID-19,Prosociality,Health behavior,Worries
    JEL: D01 D72 D91 I12 I18 H11 H12
    Date: 2022
    Abstract: Even while we are suffering from the COVID-19 pandemic, cyclical events arrive mercilessly as scheduled. While some of them are held virtually (i.e., online), some cannot be completely virtualized, at least as of now, including national elections. A major risk in holding an election during a pandemic is the increase of contagion due to the gathering of people in polling stations and campaign events. The opposite direction of causality, that is, from contagion to voter turnout, is another serious, but much less recognized, risk, because voters may refrain from voting due to health concerns. This Brief reviews some of the empirical studies on the relation between the prevalence of COVID-19 and voter turnout in recent elections in Europe and Korea. It also discusses their implications for election administration during pandemic.
    Keywords: COVID-19; Voter Turnout; Europe; Korea; election; polling
    Date: 2022–02–21
  24. By: André de Palma; Shaghayegh Vosough; Feixiong Liao (Université de Cergy-Pontoise, THEMA)
    Abstract: The outbreak of SARS-COV-2 has led to the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020 and caused over 4.5 million deaths worldwide by September 2021. Besides the public health crisis, COVID-19 affected the global economy and development significantly. It also led to changes in people’s mobility and lifestyle during the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to short-term changes, the drastic transformation of the world may account for the potentially disruptive long-term impacts. Recognizing the adverse effects of the COVID-19 pandemic is crucial in mitigating the negative behavioral changes that directly relate to people’s psychological and social well-being. It is important to stress that citizens and governments face an uncertain situation since nobody knows exactly how the viruses and cures will develop. Better understanding uncertainties and evaluating behavioral changes contribute to addressing the future of urban development, public transportation, and behavioral strategies to tackle COVID-19 negative consequences. The major sources of impacts on short-term (route, departure time, mode, teleshopping, and teleworking) and medium and long-term (car ownership, work location, choice of job, and residential location) mobility decisions are mostly reviewed and discussed in this paper.
    Keywords: COVID-19 effects, mobility, lifestyle, teleworking, residential location
    JEL: I14 R1 R4
    Date: 2022
  25. By: Keser, Claudia; Rau, Holger A.
    Abstract: This paper presents the results of a survey exploring the determinants of vacinees' confidence in COVID-19 vaccines and their motivations to become vaccinated. At the threatening rise of the highly infectious Omicron variant, in December 2021, we interviewed people in waiting lines of vaccination centers. Our results identify risk-averse and social-distancing-compliant people as showing high confidence in the vaccine, which motivates them to receive it for reasons of protecting themselves and others. By contrast, policy incentives, such as "3G/2G" restrictions, motivate risktolerant people who opted for vaccination to get access to public areas. Trusting people who regularly vote are little afraid of vaccines' side effects. Our findings offer insights for policymakers in societies and firms that help to tailor policies promoting vaccination based on people's economic preferences
    Keywords: Behavioral Economics,COVID-19,Policy Incentives,Vaccination Motives
    JEL: C91 D81 H12 I12 I18
    Date: 2022
  26. By: Hinh T. Dinh
    Abstract: COVID-19 has caused serious damage throughout the entire world. As of mid-2021, the global fiscal cost of COVID-19—excluding the most important consequences, such as human lives, mental health effects, restrictions of human freedom, and other non-pecuniary components, have amounted to at least $16.5 trillion, about 18% of world GDP (Dinh 2021). Financial support has varied across countries depending on income level, political willingness, and the extent of the pandemic in each economy. As a result, fiscal deficits in both developed and developing countries have risen. For the former, the increase in the fiscal deficit comes from both rising expenditures and declining revenues. For the latter, the fiscal deficit increase heavily reflects the collapse in fiscal revenue. However, the saga does not end here. In the coming 12–18 months, developing countries will continue to deal with the pandemic. They will be required to find resources to control the disease. In addition, governments are expected to continue to provide social protection— especially in terms of cash transfers for vulnerable populations—in order to protect the labor supply. These needs will pose massive challenges for countries under tight financial constraints, especially those at risk of debt distress. Thus, we will explore the implications of this necessary spending on the macrostability of selected developing countries.
    Date: 2022–01
  27. By: Eger, Jens; Kaplan, Lennart; Sternberg, Henrike
    Abstract: While the world faces unprecedented COVID-19 case numbers, vaccination rates in many countries are stagnating. A differentiated understanding of the concerns of the unvaccinated population seems urgently needed to design successful communication strategies. We conducted an original survey experiment among 2,100 unvaccinated respondents from Germany where a substantial population share remains unvaccinated. Guided by the elaboration likelihood model, this paper has two objectives: First, it explores by means of a latent class analysis how unvaccinated individuals might be characterised by their attitudes towards COVID-19 vaccination. The results suggest three different subgroups: Vaccination opponents, sceptics and those receptive to be vaccinated. Second, we investigate to what extent (i) communicators (scientists/politicians) can employ (ii) varying types of evidence (none/anecdotal/statistical) to improve vaccination intentions across these subgroups. While vaccination opponents seem largely unreachable, sceptics value information by scientists, particularly if supported by anecdotal evidence. Receptives seem to instead value statistical evidence from politicians.
    Keywords: vaccination hesitancy,COVID-19,Elaboration Likelihood Model,Latent ClassAnalysis,Persuasive messaging,Evidence provision
    JEL: D91 H12 I12 I18
    Date: 2022
  28. By: Gautam Nair; Kyle Peyton
    Abstract: Containing the COVID-19 pandemic will confer global benefits that greatly exceed the costs, but elective solutions require the redistribution of vaccines, technology, and other scarce resources from high-income to low-income countries. The United States has played a central role in coordinating responses to previous global health challenges, and its policy choices in the current pandemic will have a far-reaching impact on the rest of the world. Yet little is known about domestic support for international recovery efforts. We use a series of conjoint and persuasive messaging experiments, fielded on two national surveys of the U.S. adult population (N = 5,965), to study mass support for international redistribution. We find clear evidence that the general population strongly supports allocating vaccines to own-country recipients before others. Despite this “vaccine nationalism,” Americans are willing to support the government playing a major role in global pandemic recovery efforts, provided policymakers forge international agreements that ensure moderate domestic costs, burden-sharing with other countries, and priority for certain types of resources, such as domestically manufactured vaccines and patent buyouts. Finally, we test five different persuasive messaging strategies and find that emphasizing the relatively low costs and large economic benefits of global vaccination is the most promising means of increasing domestic support for international redistribution. Overall, our results demonstrate that policymakers can secure broad public support for costly international cooperation by crafting responses that are clearly aligned with U.S. economic interests.
    Keywords: vaccine nationalism, international cooperation, redistribution
    Date: 2022–03

This nep-hea issue is ©2022 by Nicolas R. Ziebarth. 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.