Keeping the Doctor Away: Experimental Evidence on Investment in Preventative Health Products

40 Pages Posted: 10 Aug 2013

See all articles by Jennifer Meredith

Jennifer Meredith

University of Washington - Department of Economics

Jonathan Robinson

University of California, Santa Cruz

Bruce Wydick

University of San Francisco - Department of Economics

Sarah Walker

UNSW Australia Business School, School of Economics

Date Written: August 2013

Abstract

Household investment in preventative health products is low in developing countries even though benefits from these products are very high. What interventions most effectively stimulate demand? In this paper, we experimentally estimate demand curves for health products in Kenya, Guatemala, India, and Uganda and test whether (1) information about health risk, (2) cash liquidity, (3) peer effects, and (4) intra-household differences in preferences affect demand. We find households to be highly sensitive to price and that both liquidity and targeting women increase demand. We find no effect of providing information, although genuine learning occurred, and we find no evidence of peer effects, although subjects discussed the product purchase decision extensively.

Suggested Citation

Meredith, Jennifer and Robinson, Jonathan and Wydick, Bruce and Walker, Sarah, Keeping the Doctor Away: Experimental Evidence on Investment in Preventative Health Products (August 2013). NBER Working Paper No. w19312. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2308280

Jennifer Meredith

University of Washington - Department of Economics ( email )

Box 353330
Seattle, WA 98195-3330
United States

Jonathan Robinson (Contact Author)

University of California, Santa Cruz ( email )

1156 High St
Santa Cruz, CA 95064
United States

Bruce Wydick

University of San Francisco - Department of Economics ( email )

2130 Fulton Street
San Francisco, CA 94117-1080
United States

Sarah Walker

UNSW Australia Business School, School of Economics ( email )

High Street
Sydney, NSW 2052
Australia

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