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Can bribery buy health? Evidence from post-communist countries

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  • Astghik Mavisakalyan

    () (Bankwest Curtin Economic Centre, Curtin University)

  • Vladimir Otrachshenko

    (Leibniz Institute for East and Southeast European Studies (IOS))

  • Olga Popova

    (Leibniz Institute for East and Southeast European Studies (IOS))

Abstract

Corruption is pervasive, but we know little about its effects on individual lives. This paper examines whether living in a corrupt society has deleterious effects on health. Using individual-level data from 28 post-communist countries, we demonstrate that bribing for public services worsens self-assessed health. Unlike other studies, we account for endogeneity of bribery and show that bribing for any type of public service, not just for health services, has an adverse impact. We also find that bribery lowers the quality of services received. Moreover, there are potentially high indirect costs of bribery since, as we show, it comes at the expense of cutting food consumption. These findings suggest that corruption is a potentially important source behind the poor health outcomes in many developing countries.

Suggested Citation

  • Astghik Mavisakalyan & Vladimir Otrachshenko & Olga Popova, 2019. "Can bribery buy health? Evidence from post-communist countries," Bankwest Curtin Economics Centre Working Paper series WP1905, Bankwest Curtin Economics Centre (BCEC), Curtin Business School.
  • Handle: RePEc:ozl:bcecwp:wp1905
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Bribery; Corruption; Health; Post-Communist Countries;

    JEL classification:

    • I15 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health and Economic Development
    • K42 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Illegal Behavior and the Enforcement of Law
    • D73 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Bureaucracy; Administrative Processes in Public Organizations; Corruption
    • H11 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - Structure and Scope of Government

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