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The Long-Term Impact of Health on GDP in 19 OECD Countries


  • Ahmet Gokce Akpolat

    (Sakarya University, Turkey)

  • Nurullah Altintas

    (Sakarya University, Turkey)


Health is assumed to influence the economy through many channels. It reduces infant mortality and increase life expectancy and adult survival rates. Health level and life expectancy affects long-term savings decisions of individuals. This study examines the relationship between health indicators and economic growth in 19 OECD countries during the period 1970-2009 within a panel data analysis. The authors employ three different measures of health. Results show that an increase in health expenditures and a decrease in infant mortality positively affect GDP in compatible with the theoretical assumptions. However, life expectancy is detected to affect GDP negatively in contrast with the theoretical expectations. In conclusion, health expenditures and services concluded to influence GDP by improving human capital. Furthermore, the authors make suggestions about how economies can remove the burden of aging population.

Suggested Citation

  • Ahmet Gokce Akpolat & Nurullah Altintas, 2012. "The Long-Term Impact of Health on GDP in 19 OECD Countries," International Journal of Social Ecology and Sustainable Development (IJSESD), IGI Global, vol. 3(1), pages 53-60, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:igg:jsesd0:v:3:y:2012:i:1:p:53-60

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