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Health Status and the Allocation of Time

  • Melinda Podor

    (Department of Economics, University of Hawaii at Manoa)

  • Timothy J. Halliday


    (Department of Economics, University of Hawaii at Manoa
    Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA))

In this paper, we quantify the effects of health on time allocation. We estimate that improvements in health status have large and positive effects on time allocated to home and market production and large negative effects on time spent watching TV, sleeping, and consuming other types of leisure. We find that poor health status results in about 300 additional hours allocated to unproductive activities per year. Plausible estimates of the cost of this lost time exceed $10,000. We also find that, for men, better health induces a substitution of market-produced goods for home-produced goods. Particularly, each additional minute spent in home production saves $0.37.

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Paper provided by University of Hawaii at Manoa, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 200907.

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Length: 35 pages
Date of creation: 05 Aug 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:hai:wpaper:200907
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  1. Behzad T. Diba & Herschel I. Grossman, 1986. "Rational Inflationary Bubbles," NBER Working Papers 2004, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Michael Baker & Mark Stabile & Catherine Deri, 2004. "What Do Self-Reported, Objective, Measures of Health Measure?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 39(4).
  3. Halliday, Timothy J., 2007. "Income Volatility and Health," IZA Discussion Papers 3234, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Deaton, A.S., 1993. "Data and Econometric Tools for Development Analysis," Papers 172, Princeton, Woodrow Wilson School - Development Studies.
  5. repec:att:wimass:9430 is not listed on IDEAS
  6. Grossman, Michael, 1972. "On the Concept of Health Capital and the Demand for Health," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 80(2), pages 223-55, March-Apr.
  7. Stephen Wu, 2003. "The Effects of Health Events on the Economic Status of Married Couples," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 38(1).
  8. John Rust & Christopher Phelan, 1997. "How Social Security and Medicare Affect Retirement Behavior in a World of Incomplete Markets," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(4), pages 781-832, July.
  9. 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.
  10. Gronau, Reuben, 1980. "Home Production-A Forgotten Industry," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 62(3), pages 408-16, August.
  11. John Bound, 1991. "Self-Reported Versus Objective Measures of Health in Retirement Models," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 26(1), pages 106-138.
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