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Health and the Evolution of Welfare across Brazilian Municipalities

  • Soares, Rodrigo R.

    ()

    (Sao Paulo School of Economics)

This paper describes the pattern of reductions in mortality across Brazilian municipalities between 1970 and 2000, and analyzes its causes and consequences. It shows that, as in the international context, the relationship between income and life expectancy has shifted consistently in the recent past. But reductions in mortality within Brazil have been more homogeneously distributed than across countries. We use a compensating differentials approach to estimate the value of the observed reductions in mortality. The results suggest that gains in life expectancy had a welfare value equivalent to 39% of the growth in income per capita, being therefore responsible for 28% of the overall improvement in welfare. We then use a dynamic panel to conduct a preliminary assessment of the potential determinants of these gains. We show that improvements in education, access to water, and sanitation seem to be important determinants of the dimension of changes in life expectancy not correlated with income.

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File URL: http://ftp.iza.org/dp2771.pdf
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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 2771.

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Length: 31 pages
Date of creation: May 2007
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Journal of Development Economics, 2007, 84(2), 590–608
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp2771
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  1. Sherwin Rosen, . "The Value of Changes in Life Expectancy," University of Chicago - Population Research Center 87-14, Chicago - Population Research Center.
  2. 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.
  3. Samuel H. Preston, 1980. "Causes and Consequences of Mortality Declines in Less Developed Countries during the Twentieth Century," NBER Chapters, in: Population and Economic Change in Developing Countries, pages 289-360 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Arellano, Manuel & Bond, Stephen, 1991. "Some Tests of Specification for Panel Data: Monte Carlo Evidence and an Application to Employment Equations," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(2), pages 277-97, April.
  5. Thomas Merrick, 1985. "The effect of piped water on early childhood mortality in Urban Brazil, 1970 to 1976," Demography, Springer, vol. 22(1), pages 1-24, February.
  6. Angus Deaton, 2004. "Health in an Age of Globalization," NBER Working Papers 10669, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Kristina Burström & Magnus Johannesson & Finn Diderichsen, 2003. "The value of the change in health in Sweden 1980|81 to 1996|97," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 12(8), pages 637-654.
  8. François Bourguignon & Christian Morrisson, 2001. "Inequality among World Citizens : 1820-1992," DELTA Working Papers 2001-18, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
  9. Steve Bond, 2002. "Dynamic panel data models: a guide to microdata methods and practice," CeMMAP working papers CWP09/02, Centre for Microdata Methods and Practice, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  10. Gary S. Becker & Tomas J. Philipson & Rodrigo R. Soares, 2003. "The Quantity and Quality of Life and the Evolution of World Inequality," NBER Working Papers 9765, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Mushfiq Mobarak, Ahmed & Rajkumar, Andrew Sunil & Cropper, Maureen, 2005. "The political economy of health services provision and access in Brazil," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3508, The World Bank.
  12. repec:reg:rpubli:282 is not listed on IDEAS
  13. Alves, Denisard & Belluzzo, Walter, 2004. "Infant mortality and child health in Brazil," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 2(3), pages 391-410, December.
  14. W. Kip Viscusi & Joseph E. Aldy, 2003. "The Value of a Statistical Life: A Critical Review of Market Estimates throughout the World," NBER Working Papers 9487, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. David M. Cutler & Elizabeth Richardson, 1997. "Measuring the Health of the U.S. Population," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 28(1997 Micr), pages 217-282.
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