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Keeping the Doctor Away: Experimental Evidence on Investment in Preventative Health Products

  • Jennifer M. Meredith
  • Jonathan Robinson
  • Sarah Walker
  • Bruce Wydick

Household investment in preventative health products is low in developing countries even though benefits from these products are very high. What interventions most effectively stimulate demand? In this paper, we experimentally estimate demand curves for health products in Kenya, Guatemala, India, and Uganda and test whether (1) information about health risk, (2) cash liquidity, (3) peer effects, and (4) intra-household differences in preferences affect demand. We find households to be highly sensitive to price and that both liquidity and targeting women increase demand. We find no effect of providing information, although genuine learning occurred, and we find no evidence of peer effects, although subjects discussed the product purchase decision extensively.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 19312.

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Date of creation: Aug 2013
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Publication status: published as Meredith, Jennifer & Robinson, Jonathan & Walker, Sarah & Wydick, Bruce, 2013. "Keeping the doctor away: Experimental evidence on investment in preventative health products," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 105(C), pages 196-210.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:19312
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