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Valuation of Human Health: An Integrated Model of Willingness to Pay for Mortality and Morbidity Risk Reductions

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  • Shelby Gerking
  • Mark Dickie
  • Marcella Veronesi

Abstract

This paper develops and applies an integrated model of human mortality and morbidity valuation that is consistent with principles of welfare economics. The standard expected utility model of one person facing two health states (alive and dead) is extended to a setting in which two family members (a parent and a child) face three health states (healthy, sick, and dead). A key finding is that total health benefits of public programs equate to the sum of willingness to pay for reduced mortality risk plus a fraction of the willingness to pay for reduced morbidity risk. Implications of the integrated model are tested using two field data sets from the U.S. on skin cancer and leukemia risk reductions. Results obtained show how the integrated model can be used to increase the accuracy of health benefit estimation for benefit-cost analyses as well as for the design of public hazard reduction programs.

Suggested Citation

  • Shelby Gerking & Mark Dickie & Marcella Veronesi, 2012. "Valuation of Human Health: An Integrated Model of Willingness to Pay for Mortality and Morbidity Risk Reductions," NCEE Working Paper Series 201207, National Center for Environmental Economics, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, revised Oct 2012.
  • Handle: RePEc:nev:wpaper:wp201207
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    File URL: https://www.epa.gov/environmental-economics/working-paper-valuation-human-health-integrated-model-willingness-pay
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    18. Blomquist, Glenn C. & Dickie, Mark & O'Conor, Richard M., 2011. "Willingness to pay for improving fatality risks and asthma symptoms: Values for children and adults of all ages," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 410-425, May.
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    Cited by:

    1. Rheinberger, Christoph M. & Herrera-Araujo, Daniel & Hammitt, James K., 2016. "The value of disease prevention vs treatment," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(C), pages 247-255.
    2. Mark Dickie & Shelby Gerking & Wiktor Adamowicz & Marcella Veronesi, 2020. "Risk Perception, Learning and Willingness to Pay to Reduce Heart Disease Risks," Working Papers 11/2020, University of Verona, Department of Economics.
    3. Veronesi, Marcella & Reutemann, Tim & Zabel, Astrid & Engel, Stefanie, 2015. "Designing REDD+ schemes when forest users are not forest landowners: Evidence from a survey-based experiment in Kenya," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 116(C), pages 46-57.
    4. George Parsons & Kelley Myers, 2017. "Fat tails and truncated bids in contingent valuation: an application to an endangered shorebird species," Chapters, in: Daniel McFadden & Kenneth Train (ed.), Contingent Valuation of Environmental Goods, chapter 2, pages 17-42, Edward Elgar Publishing.
    5. Menon Martina & Perali Federico & Veronesi Marcella, 2017. "“Leaving No Child Behind:” Preferences for Social Inclusion and Altruism," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 17(3), pages 1-19, July.
    6. Martina Menon & Federico Perali & Marcella Veronesi, 2013. "Preferences for Social Inclusion: Empirical Evidence from Juvenile Rehabilitation in Italy," Working Papers 18/2013, University of Verona, Department of Economics.
    7. Anna Bartczak & Wiktor Budziński & Susan Chilton & Rebecca McDonald & Jytte Seested Nielsen, 2021. "Altruism and efficient allocations in three-generation households," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 62(2), pages 113-135, April.
    8. Byl, Jacob P. & Viscusi, W. Kip, 2021. "Experimental study of consumer responses to different sources of information about prescription drugs," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 186(C), pages 754-771.
    9. Shelby Gerking & Wiktor Adamowicz & Mark Dickie & Marcella Veronesi, 2017. "Baseline risk and marginal willingness to pay for health risk reduction," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 55(2), pages 177-202, December.
    10. Glenn W. Harrison & Jia Min Ng, 2019. "Behavioral insurance and economic theory: A literature review," Risk Management and Insurance Review, American Risk and Insurance Association, vol. 22(2), pages 133-182, July.
    11. Morteza Chalak & Veronique Florec & Atakelty Hailu & Fiona Gibson & David Pannell, 2017. "Integrating non-market values in economic analyses of flood mitigation: a case study of the Brown Hill and Keswick creeks catchment in Adelaide," Working Papers 256513, University of Western Australia, School of Agricultural and Resource Economics.
    12. Hammitt, James K. & Herrera-Araujo, Daniel & Rheinberger, Christoph, 2016. "The Value of Cancer Prevention vs Treatment," TSE Working Papers 16-628, Toulouse School of Economics (TSE).
    13. Christoph M. Rheinberger & James K. Hammitt, 2018. "Dinner with Bayes: On the revision of risk beliefs," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 57(3), pages 253-280, December.
    14. Veronesi, Marcella & Chawla, Fabienne & Maurer, Max & Lienert, Judit, 2014. "Climate change and the willingness to pay to reduce ecological and health risks from wastewater flooding in urban centers and the environment," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 98(C), pages 1-10.
    15. Christoph M. Rheinberger & Nicolas Treich, 2017. "Attitudes Toward Catastrophe," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 67(3), pages 609-636, July.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    willingness to pay; children; environmental hazards; health; integrated analysis; morbidity; mortality; value of statistical life; cancer; stated preference;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • Q51 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Valuation of Environmental Effects

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