The Effect of the 2009 Influenza Pandemic on Labor Market Outcomes
26 Pages Posted: 10 Apr 2016
Date Written: April 4, 2016
In July 2009, the WHO declared the first flu pandemic in nearly 40 years. Although the health effects of the pandemic have been studied, there is little research examining the labor productivity consequences. Using unique sick leave data from the Chilean private health insurance system, we estimate the impact of the pandemic on missed days of work. We estimate that the pandemic increased mean days missed by 0.04 days per person-month, representing a 700-800% increase in missed days relative to non-pandemic years. Calculations using the estimated effect imply a minimum 0.2% reduction in Chile’s labor supply.
Keywords: Pandemic, H1N1, Employment, Work Loss
JEL Classification: I13, I18, J32
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation