Essays on Health Economics

Essays on Health Economics

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In Chapter II, my co-author, Hanming Fang, and I look at one possible explanation to the under-utilization of preventive health care in the United States: procrastination. Procrastination, the phenomenon that individuals postpone certain decisions which incur instantaneous costs but bring long-term benefits, is captured in economics by hyperbolic discount factors and the corresponding time-inconsistent preferences. This chapter extends the semi-parametric identification and estimation method for dynamic discrete choice models using Hotz and Miller's (1993) conditional choice probability approach to the setting where individuals may have hyperbolic discounting time preferences and may be naive about their time inconsistency. We implement the proposed estimation method to US adult women's decisions of undertaking mammography tests to evaluate the importance of present bias and naivety in the under-utilization of mammography, controlling for other potentially important explanatory factors such as age, race, household income, and marital status. Preliminary results show evidence for both present bias and naivety in adult women's decisions of undertaking mammography tests. Using the parameters estimated, we further conduct some policy simulations to quantify the effects of the present bias and naivety on the utilization of preventive health care in the US.In Chapter II, my co-author, Hanming Fang, and I look at one possible explanation to the under-utilization of preventive health care in the United States: procrastination.


Title:Essays on Health Economics
Author: Yang Wang
Publisher:ProQuest - 2009
ISBN-13:

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