Reporting Heterogeneity in Self-Assessed Health Among Elderly Europeans: The Impact of Mental and Physical Health Status

Universität Bayreuth Discussion Paper No. 02-11

30 Pages Posted: 30 Mar 2011 Last revised: 1 Apr 2011

See all articles by Christian Pfarr

Christian Pfarr

University of Bayreuth

Andreas Schmid

University of Bayreuth

Udo Schneider

Techniker Krankenkasse

Date Written: March 28, 2011

Abstract

Self-assessed health (SAH) is a frequently used measure of individuals’ health status. It is also prone to reporting heterogeneity. To control for reporting heterogeneity valid measures of the objective health status are needed. The topic becomes even more complex for cross-country comparisons, as many key variables tend to vary strongly across countries, influenced by cultural and institutional differences. This study aims at exploring the key drivers for reporting heterogeneity in SAH in an international context. To this end, country specific effects are accounted for and the objective health measure is concretized, separating out effects of mental and physical health conditions. We use panel data from the Survey of Health, Aging and Retirement in Europe (SHARE) which provides a rich dataset on the elderly European population. To obtain distinct indicators for physical and mental health conditions two indices were constructed. Finally, to identify potential reporting heterogeneity in SAH a generalized ordered probit model is estimated. We find evidence that health behaviour as well as health care utilization, mental and physical health condition as well as country characteristics affect reporting behaviour. We conclude that observed and unobserved heterogeneity play an important role when analysing SAH and have to be taken into account.

Keywords: reporting heterogeneity, SHARE, generalized ordered probit

JEL Classification: C23, I10, I12

Suggested Citation

Pfarr, Christian and Schmid, Andreas and Schneider, Udo, Reporting Heterogeneity in Self-Assessed Health Among Elderly Europeans: The Impact of Mental and Physical Health Status (March 28, 2011). Universität Bayreuth Discussion Paper No. 02-11, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1797591 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1797591

Christian Pfarr

University of Bayreuth ( email )

Universitatsstr 30
Bayreuth, D-95447
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.fiwi.uni-bayreuth.de

Andreas Schmid

University of Bayreuth ( email )

Universitätsstraße 30
Bayreuth, 95447
Germany

Udo Schneider (Contact Author)

Techniker Krankenkasse ( email )

Bramfelder Str. 140
D-22305 Hamburg
Germany

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