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Pharmaceutical Innovation and Longevity Growth in 30 Developing and High-income Countries, 2000-2009

  • Frank R. Lichtenberg

I examine the impact of pharmaceutical innovation, as measured by the vintage (world launch year) of prescription drugs used, on longevity using longitudinal, country-level data on 30 developing and high-income countries during the period 2000-2009. I control for fixed country and year effects, real per capita income, the unemployment rate, mean years of schooling, the urbanization rate, real per capita health expenditure (public and private), the DPT immunization rate among children ages 12-23 months, HIV prevalence and tuberculosis incidence. The estimates indicate that life expectancy at all ages and survival rates above age 25 increased faster in countries with larger increases in drug vintage (measured in three different ways), ceteris paribus, and that the increase in life expectancy at birth due to the increase in the fraction of drugs consumed that were launched after 1990 was 1.27 years--73% of the actual increase in life expectancy at birth.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 18235.

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Date of creation: Jul 2012
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as Health Policy and Technology Volume 3, Issue 1, March 2014, Pages 36–58
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:18235
Note: AG EFG HC PR
Contact details of provider: Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
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  1. Patricia M. Danzon & Y. Richard Wang & Liang Wang, 2005. "The impact of price regulation on the launch delay of new drugs-evidence from twenty-five major markets in the 1990s," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 14(3), pages 269-292.
  2. Daron Acemoglu & Joshua Linn, 2004. "Market Size in Innovation: Theory and Evidence from the Pharmaceutical Industry," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 119(3), pages 1049-1090, August.
  3. Hulten, Charles R, 1992. "Growth Accounting When Technical Change Is Embodied in Capital," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(4), pages 964-80, September.
  4. Christopher J. Ruhm, 2003. "Healthy Living in Hard Times," NBER Working Papers 9468, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Adriana Lleras-Muney, 2005. "The Relationship Between Education and Adult Mortality in the United States," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 72(1), pages 189-221.
  6. Paul Romer, 1989. "Endogenous Technological Change," NBER Working Papers 3210, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Frank R. Lichtenberg, 2012. "Contribution of Pharmaceutical Innovation to Longevity Growth in Germany and France, 2001-7," PharmacoEconomics, Springer Healthcare | Adis, vol. 30(3), pages 197-211.
  8. Hercowitz, Zvi, 1998. "The 'embodiment' controversy: A review essay," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(1), pages 217-224, February.
  9. Frank Lichtenberg, 2011. "The quality of medical care, behavioral risk factors, and longevity growth," International Journal of Health Care Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 11(1), pages 1-34, March.
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