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Health-related effects of welfare-to-work policies

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  • Ayala, Luis
  • Rodríguez, Magdalena

Abstract

Non-health related policies may have consequences for health that are more important than the outcomes they were originally designed to produce. In this paper we evaluate the effects of welfare-to-work programs (WTW) on physical and mental health status and a variety of health behaviors. The paper is based on data from the minimum income program of Madrid's Government (IMI). We match the program's administrative records (39,200 households) – covering the whole history of the program from the second half of 1990 to 2001 – with a specific survey of former recipients who took part in different work-related activities conducted in 2001 (2300 households). We perform propensity score matching to find that both health status – including physical and mental health problems – and behaviors outcomes were modestly better for those individuals who had taken part in work-related activities. These results offer support for the contention that welfare-to-work policies may have positive unintended health effects.

Suggested Citation

  • Ayala, Luis & Rodríguez, Magdalena, 2013. "Health-related effects of welfare-to-work policies," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 93(C), pages 103-112.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:socmed:v:93:y:2013:i:c:p:103-112
    DOI: 10.1016/j.socscimed.2013.05.037
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Marta Pascual-Saez & David Cantarero-Prieto & Noelia González-Prieto, 2016. "Opening the black box of under-health people: the case of Spain," Health Economics Review, Springer, vol. 6(1), pages 1-6, December.
    2. Curnock, Esther & Leyland, Alastair H. & Popham, Frank, 2016. "The impact on health of employment and welfare transitions for those receiving out-of-work disability benefits in the UK," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 162(C), pages 1-10.
    3. Rosa Urbanos-Garrido & Beatriz Lopez-Valcarcel, 2015. "The influence of the economic crisis on the association between unemployment and health: an empirical analysis for Spain," The European Journal of Health Economics, Springer;Deutsche Gesellschaft für Gesundheitsökonomie (DGGÖ), vol. 16(2), pages 175-184, March.
    4. Daniel Sage, 2015. "Do Active Labour Market Policies Promote the Well-Being, Health and Social Capital of the Unemployed? Evidence from the UK," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 124(2), pages 319-337, November.
    5. Berta Rivera & Bruno Casal & Luis Currais, 2017. "Crisis, suicide and labour productivity losses in Spain," The European Journal of Health Economics, Springer;Deutsche Gesellschaft für Gesundheitsökonomie (DGGÖ), vol. 18(1), pages 83-96, January.

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