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Is there a Retirement-Health Care utilization puzzle? Evidence from SHARE data in Europe

Author

Listed:
  • Eve Caroli
  • Claudio Lucifora

    (Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore
    Dipartimento di Economia e Finanza, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore)

  • Daria Vigani

    (Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore
    Dipartimento di Economia e Finanza, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore)

Abstract

We investigate the causal impact of retirement on health care utilization. Using SHARE data (from 2004 to 2013) for 10 European countries, we show that health care utilization increases when individuals retire. This is true both for the number of doctor’s visits and for the intensity of medical care use (defined as the probability of going more than 4 times a year to the doctor’s). This increase turns out to be driven by visits to general practitioners’, while specialists’ visits are not affected. We also find that the impact of retirement on health care utilization is significantly stronger for workers retiring from jobs characterized by long hours worked - more than 48 hours a week and/or being in the 5th quintile of the distribution of hours worked. This suggests that at least part of the increase in medical care use following retirement is due to the decrease in the opportunity cost of time faced by individuals when they retire.

Suggested Citation

  • Eve Caroli & Claudio Lucifora & Daria Vigani, 2016. "Is there a Retirement-Health Care utilization puzzle? Evidence from SHARE data in Europe," DISCE - Working Papers del Dipartimento di Economia e Finanza def049, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Dipartimenti e Istituti di Scienze Economiche (DISCE).
  • Handle: RePEc:ctc:serie1:def049
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    Cited by:

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Retirement; Health; Health Care Utilization.;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J26 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Retirement; Retirement Policies
    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General
    • C26 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Instrumental Variables (IV) Estimation

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