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Crowding out of Solidarity? – Public Health Insurance versus Informal Transfer Networks in Ghana

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  • Florian Klohn
  • Christoph Strupat

    ()

Abstract

This paper delivers empirical evidence on how informal transfers are affected by a formal and country-wide health insurance scheme. Using the fifth wave of the Ghanaian Living Standard Household Survey, we investigate the extent to which the exogenous implementation of the National Health Insurance Scheme affects the probability of making or receiving informal transfers and their monetary equivalents. Our findings suggest that there is a significant crowding out of informal transfers. Members of weak transfer networks and individuals that run an enterprise are inclined to reduce their amount of remittances. We conclude that the provision of formal health insurance can reduce covariate risk in weak transfer networks and support business owners that are confronted by strong sharing obligations.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen in its series Ruhr Economic Papers with number 0432.

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Length: 44 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:rwi:repape:0432

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Related research

Keywords: Public health insurance; informal transfer networks; crowding out; Ghana;

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References

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  1. Townsend, Robert M, 1994. "Risk and Insurance in Village India," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 62(3), pages 539-91, May.
  2. Stefan Dercon & Pramila Krishnan, 2003. "Risk Sharing and Public Transfers," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 113(486), pages C86-C94, March.
  3. Abigail Barr & Garance Genicot, 2008. "Risk Sharing, Commitment, and Information: An Experimental Analysis," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 6(6), pages 1151-1185, December.
  4. Attanasio, Orazio & Rios-Rull, Jose-Victor, 2000. "Consumption smoothing in island economies: Can public insurance reduce welfare?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 44(7), pages 1225-1258, June.
  5. Alberto Abadie & Joshua Angrist & Guido Imbens, 2002. "Instrumental Variables Estimates of the Effect of Subsidized Training on the Quantiles of Trainee Earnings," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(1), pages 91-117, January.
  6. Marina Pavan & Aldo Colussi, 2008. "Assessing the Impact of Public Transfers on Private Risk Sharing Arrangements. Evidence from a Randomized Experiment in Mexico," Working Papers 200807, Geary Institute, University College Dublin.
  7. Grimm, Michael & Hartwig, Renate & Lay, Jann, 2013. "Does Forced Solidarity Hamper Investment in Small and Micro Enterprises?," IZA Discussion Papers 7229, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  8. Esther Duflo & Michael Kremer & Jonathan Robinson, 2011. "Nudging Farmers to Use Fertilizer: Theory and Experimental Evidence from Kenya," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(6), pages 2350-90, October.
  9. Christopher Udry & Timothy G. Conley, 2004. "Social Networks in Ghana," Working Papers 888, Economic Growth Center, Yale University.
  10. Landmann, Andreas & Vollan, Björn & Frölich, Markus, 2012. "Insurance versus Savings for the Poor: Why One Should Offer Either Both or None," IZA Discussion Papers 6298, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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