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Reporting bias and heterogeneity in selfassessed health. Evidence from the British Household Panel Survey

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  • Cristina Hernández-Quevedo
  • Andrew M Jones
  • Nigel Rice

Abstract

This paper explores reporting bias and heterogeneity in the measure of self-assessed health (SAH) used in the British Household Panel Survey (BHPS). The ninth wave of the BHPS includes the SF-36 general health questionnaire, which incorporates a different wording to the self-assessed health variable used at other waves. Considerable attention has been devoted to the reliability of SAH and the scope for contamination by measurement error; the change in wording at wave 9 provides a form of natural experiment that allows us to assess the sensitivity of panel data analyses to a change in the measurement instrument. In particular, we investigate reporting bias due explicitly to the change in the question. We show how progressively more general specifications of reporting bias can be implemented using panel data ordered probit and generalised ordered probit models. Then we explore the sensitivity of measures of socioeconomic inequality and of mobility in health to changes in the measurement of SAH.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by HEDG, c/o Department of Economics, University of York in its series Health, Econometrics and Data Group (HEDG) Working Papers with number 05/04.

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Date of creation: Jun 2005
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Handle: RePEc:yor:hectdg:05/04

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Postal: HEDG/HERC, Department of Economics and Related Studies, University of York, York, YO10 5DD, United Kingdom
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Web page: http://www.york.ac.uk/economics/postgrad/herc/hedg/
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Keywords: self-assessed health; reporting bias; ordered probit; generalised ordered probit; inequality in health;

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  1. Lindley & Lorgelly, 2005. "The relative income hypothesis: does it exist over time? Evidence from the BHPS," Labor and Demography 0510007, EconWPA.
  2. P Grootendorst & D Feeny & W Furlong, 1994. "Does It Matter Whom and How You Ask? Inter and Intra-rater Agreement in the Ontario Health Survey," Centre for Health Economics and Policy Analysis Working Paper Series 1994-12, Centre for Health Economics and Policy Analysis (CHEPA), McMaster University, Hamilton, Canada.
  3. Michaela Benzeval & Jayne Taylor & Ken Judge, 2000. "Evidence on the relationship between income and poor health: is the government doing enough?," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 21(3), pages 375-399, September.
  4. Contoyannis, Paul & Jones, Andrew M., 2004. "Socio-economic status, health and lifestyle," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(5), pages 965-995, September.
  5. Lindeboom, Maarten & van Doorslaer, Eddy, 2004. "Cut-point shift and index shift in self-reported health," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(6), pages 1083-1099, November.
  6. James P. Smith, 1999. "Healthy Bodies and Thick Wallets: The Dual Relation between Health and Economic Status," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 13(2), pages 145-166, Spring.
  7. Kenkel, D.S., 1989. "Should You Eat Breakfast? Estimates From Health Production Functions," Papers 9-90-8, Pennsylvania State - Department of Economics.
  8. Michael A. Shields & Paul Frijters & John Haisken-DeNew, 2004. "Estimating the causal effect of income on health: Evidence from post-reunification Germany," Econometric Society 2004 Australasian Meetings 151, Econometric Society.
  9. Peter Adams & Michael D. Hurd & Daniel L. McFadden & Angela Merrill & Tiago Ribeiro, 2004. "Healthy, Wealthy, and Wise? Tests for Direct Causal Paths between Health and Socioeconomic Status," NBER Chapters, in: Perspectives on the Economics of Aging, pages 415-526 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Groot, Wim, 2000. "Adaptation and scale of reference bias in self-assessments of quality of life," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 403-420, May.
  11. Paul Contoyannis & Andrew M. Jones & Nigel Rice, 2004. "The dynamics of health in the British Household Panel Survey," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 19(4), pages 473-503.
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  1. HowTo: Reporting bias. Or, why do little kids prefer apples from McDonaldâ??s?
    by zooeygoethe in Economic Objectorvism on 2007-08-08 15:44:03
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