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The impact of new drug launches on longevity: evidence from longitudinal disease-level data from 52 countries, 1982-2001

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  • Frank R. Lichtenberg

Abstract

We perform an econometric analysis of the effect of new drug launches on longevity, using data from the IMS Health Drug Launches database and the WHO Mortality Database. Our data cover virtually all of the diseases borne by people in 52 countries during the period 1982-2001, and enable us to control, to an unusually great extent, for the effects of other potential determinants of longevity, e.g. education, income, nutrition, the environment, and lifestyle'. We find that launches of new chemical entities (NCEs) have a strong positive impact on the probability of survival. Launches of (older) drugs that are not NCEs do not increase longevity. NCE launches account for a significant fraction of the long-run increase in longevity in the sample as a whole. Between 1986 and 2000, average life expectancy of the entire population of sample countries increased by almost two years. Our estimates imply that NCE launches accounted for 0.8 years (40%) of the 1986-2000 increase in longevity. The average annual increase in life expectancy of the entire population resulting from NCE launches is .056 years, or 2.93 weeks.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 9754.

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Date of creation: Jun 2003
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Publication status: published as Frank Lichtenberg, 2005. "The Impact of New Drug Launches on Longevity: Evidence from Longitudinal, Disease-Level Data from 52 Countries, 1982–2001," International Journal of Health Care Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 5(1), pages 47-73, January.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:9754

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  1. William D. Nordhaus, 2002. "The Health of Nations: The Contribution of Improved Health to Living Standards," NBER Working Papers 8818, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Lichtenberg, Frank R, 1996. "Do (More and Better) Drugs Keep People Out of Hospitals?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 384-88, May.
  3. Robert C. Feenstra & Matthew D. Shapiro, 2003. "Scanner Data and Price Indexes," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number feen03-1, October.
  4. Liu, Jin-Tan & Hammitt, James K. & Liu, Jin-Long, 1997. "Estimated hedonic wage function and value of life in a developing country," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 57(3), pages 353-358, December.
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Cited by:
  1. Lee G. Branstetter & Chirantan Chatterjee & Matthew Higgins, 2011. "Regulation and Welfare: Evidence from Paragraph IV Generic Entry in the Pharmaceutical Industry," NBER Working Papers 17188, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Nebibe Varol & Joan Costa-i-Font & Alistair McGuire, 2010. "Do international launch strategies of pharmaceutical corporations respond to changes in the regulatory environment?," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 29972, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  3. Rodrigo R. Soares, 2007. "On the Determinants of Mortality Reductions in the Developing World," NBER Working Papers 12837, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Giovanni Prarolo & Francesco Lancia, 2007. "A Politico-Economic Model of Aging, Technology Adoption and Growth," Working Papers 2007.48, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  5. Rodrigo R. Soares, 2004. "Mortality Reductions, Educational Attainment, and Fertility Choice," Econometric Society 2004 North American Winter Meetings 9, Econometric Society.
  6. Bergh, Andreas & Nilsson, Therese, 2009. "Good for Living? On the Relation between Globalization and Life Expectancy," Ratio Working Papers 136, The Ratio Institute.
  7. Nebibe Varol & Joan Costa-i-Font & Alistair McGuire, 2011. "Explaining Early Adoption on New Medicines: Regulation, Innovation and Scale," CESifo Working Paper Series 3459, CESifo Group Munich.
  8. Frank R. Lichtenberg, 2004. "The Expanding Pharmaceutical Arsenal in the War on Cancer," NBER Working Papers 10328, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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