Health, Welfare and Inequality
AbstractThis paper uses data from the Health and Retirement Study (HRS) to study the relationship between health status and economic welfare at household level. We develop a model to estimate the welfare cost of ill health by exploiting the methodology of the equivalence scales. The crucial variables in this approach are, besides the health status (measured in several dimensions), the economic decisions of the household which can be directly related to health conditions, such as health-related expenses. By estimating a demand system we derive health-equivalence scales to learn about the cost of health conditions on economic welfare, controlling for other covariates. Our estimates suggest that – when taking account of health – the welfare of households in poor health drops substantially and inequality increases. There are important social welfare costs associated with differences in the health status of the elderly in the USA.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Department of Economics, University of Venice "Ca' Foscari" in its series Working Papers with number 2006_41.
Length: 32 pages
Date of creation: 2006
Date of revision:
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Postal: Cannaregio, S. Giobbe no 873 , 30121 Venezia
Web page: http://www.unive.it/dip.economia
More information through EDIRC
welfare cost; health; inequality;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Production
- I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
- J14 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of the Elderly; Economics of the Handicapped; Non-Labor Market Discrimination
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