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Welfare State and Life Satisfaction: Evidence from Public Health Care


We examine the link between the welfare state and citizens' subjective wellbeing by using evidence from public health care services. By combining local-level data on public health care and individual-level data on life satisfaction, we show that relatively high expenditures in health care have a positive effect on individuals' life satisfaction in our data. We find some evidence for an 'ends-against-the-middle' equilibrium in provision of public health care, where middle-income individuals prefer higher public expenditure than low-income or high-income individuals. Further, our results indicate that the welfare benefit of public provision depends on individual political orientation. Copyright (c) The London School of Economics and Political Science 2008.

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Article provided by London School of Economics and Political Science in its journal Economica.

Volume (Year): 77 (2010)
Issue (Month): 307 (07)
Pages: 565-583

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Handle: RePEc:bla:econom:v:77:y:2010:i:307:p:565-583
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