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The Effect of Health Changes and Long-term Health on the Work Activity of Older Canadians

Author

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  • Doreen Wing Han Au
  • Thomas F. Crossley
  • Martin Schellhorn

Abstract

Using longitudinal data from the Canadian National Population Health Survey (NPHS), we study the relationship between health and employment among older Canadians. We focus on two issues: (1) the possible problems with self-reported health, including endogeneity and measurement error, and (2) the relative importance of health changes and long-term health in the decision to work. We contrast estimates of the impact of health on employment using self- assessed health, an objective health index contained in the NPHS - the HUI3, and a "purged" health stock measure. Our results suggest that health has an economically significant effect on employment probabilities for Canadian men and women aged 50 to 64, and that this effect is underestimated by simple estimates based on self- assessed health. We also corroborate recent U.S. and U.K. findings that changes in health are important in the work decision.

Suggested Citation

  • Doreen Wing Han Au & Thomas F. Crossley & Martin Schellhorn, 2005. "The Effect of Health Changes and Long-term Health on the Work Activity of Older Canadians," Social and Economic Dimensions of an Aging Population Research Papers 134, McMaster University.
  • Handle: RePEc:mcm:sedapp:134
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    health; health changes; employment; older workers;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior
    • J26 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Retirement; Retirement Policies

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