International Comparisons in Health Economics: Evidence from Aging Studies

49 Pages Posted: 4 Feb 2012

See all articles by James W. Banks

James W. Banks

Institute for Fiscal Studies; University of Manchester

James P. Smith

RAND Corporation; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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Abstract

We provide an overview of the growing literature that uses micro-level data from multiple countries to investigate health outcomes, and their link to socioeconomic factors, at older ages. Since the data are at a comparatively young stage, much of the analysis is at an early stage and limited to a handful of countries, with analysis for the US and England being the most common. What is immediately apparent as we get better measures is that health differences between countries amongst those at older ages are real and large. Countries are ranked differently according to whether one considers life-expectancy, prevalence or incidence of one condition or another. And the magnitude of international disparities may vary according to whether measures utilize doctor diagnosed conditions or biomarker-based indicators of disease and poor health. But one key finding emerges – the US ranks poorly on all indicators with the exception of self-reported subjective health status.

Keywords: international health, labor markets

JEL Classification: I0, H0

Suggested Citation

Banks, James W. and Smith, James P., International Comparisons in Health Economics: Evidence from Aging Studies. IZA Discussion Paper No. 6297, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1999325

James W. Banks (Contact Author)

Institute for Fiscal Studies ( email )

7 Ridgmount Street
London, WC1E 7AE
United Kingdom

University of Manchester

Oxford Road
Manchester, M13 9PL
United Kingdom

James P. Smith

RAND Corporation ( email )

P.O. Box 2138
1776 Main Street
Santa Monica, CA 90407-2138
United States

IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

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