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Er verdien av liv høyere for de rike og friske enn for de fattige og syke?

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  • Hoel, Michael

    () (Department of Economics)

Abstract

De aller fleste som blir stilt spørsmålet i overskriften ville trolig svare et entydig nei. Unntaket er økonomer. Mange (de fleste?) økonomer vil nok ikke uten videre svare nei, men vil ønske at spørsmålet stilles mer presist før de vil gi et svar. I dette innlegget vil jeg gi et par eksempler på analyser hvor det ikke er opplagt at svaret er nei. Jeg vil også se på konsekvensen av at en i analyser legger til grunn at verdien av liv er uavhengig av inntekt og helse, selv om standard økonomisk teori skulle tilsi at dette ikke er tilfelle. Artikkelen er delt i to hoveddeler. I den første hoveddelen ser jeg på inntektsulikheter mellom land. Problemstillingen her er å gi en samfunnsøkonomisk vurdering av omfanget av et internasjonalt kollektivt gode som kan øke gjennomsnittlig levealder i alle land. Da det kollektive godet koster noe, må en anslå verdien av den økte levealderen for å vurdere omfanget av dette godet. Et viktig spørsmål er om en skal verdsette økt levealder likt på tvers av land, selv om landene har ulik inntekt. I den andre hoveddelen av artikkelen ser jeg på et enkelt land, og ser bort fra inntektsforskjeller mellom personer i dette landet. Derimot kan ulike personer ha ulik helse. Ulike typer helsetiltak kan gi ulik virkning på levealderen for ulike typer pasienter. I helseøkonomi-litteraturen blir det ofte hevdet at et krav om kostnadseffektivitet (nærmere presisert senere i artikkelen) er et viktig kriterium for å allokere et helsebudsjett mellom ulike konkurrerende formål. I artikkelen diskuterer jeg om et slikt kriterium implisitt verdsetter et ekstra leveår for en frisk person høyere enn for en person som har en redusert helsekvalitet, f.eks. en blind.

Suggested Citation

  • Hoel, Michael, 2009. "Er verdien av liv høyere for de rike og friske enn for de fattige og syke?," HERO On line Working Paper Series 2003:22, Oslo University, Health Economics Research Programme.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:oslohe:2003_022
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    File URL: http://www.hero.uio.no/publicat/2003/HERO2003_22.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Keywords

    Inntekstulikheter; verdien av liv; inntekt og helse; levealder; kostnadseffektivitet;

    JEL classification:

    • I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health

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