Behavioural Response to a Sudden Health Risk: Dengue and Educational Outcomes in Colombia

41 Pages Posted: 7 Mar 2017

See all articles by Kai Barron

Kai Barron

WZB Berlin Social Science Center

Luis Fernando Gamboa

Department of Economics, Universidad Jorge Tadeo Lozano

Paul Andrés Rodríguez-Lesmes

University College London - Department of Economics

Date Written: September 9, 2016

Abstract

English Abstract: This paper makes use of a short, sharp, unexpected health shock to examine the indirect behavioural response of the general public to a sudden shift in the perceived risk of a substantial deterioration of health and mortality. While existing work has been done estimating the direct effects of an epidemic on the afflicted families, we instead focus on assessing the indirect effect of a sudden epidemic on the population as a whole, mediated by the behavioural response to the sudden shift in the perceived risks of engaging in certain activities. Our analysis finds that the influence of the epidemic extends far beyond those directly afflicted: it essentially comprises a behavioural response to the fear of contracting the disease. Strikingly, we find that close to 4 fewer students, out of a typical class of 47 pupils, sit their school leaving examination for every additional 10 cases of severe Dengue per 10.000 inhabitants in a municipality, but the response to classic Dengue is inconclusive.

Spanish Abstract: Este documento utiliza un evento de salud corto e inesperado para analizar la existencia de respuestas indirectas de la población frente a cambios repentinos en el riesgo percibido de un deterioro de salud. El trabajo se enfoca en evaluar los efectos indirectos de un brote epidémico repentino sobre la población como un todo, reconociendo la existencia de otros trabajos que evalúan los efectos directos. El análisis encuentra que la influencia de la epidemia va más allá de los directamente afectados, mostrando que existe un comportamiento particular en respuesta al temor de contraer la enfermedad. En particular, se encuentra que en un curso con un tamaño aproximado de 47 estudiantes, faltan aproximadamente 4 estudiantes a la prueba Saber 11 por cada 10 casos adicionales de dengue hemorrágico por 10.000 habitantes, pero la respuesta a casos de dengue clásico no es concluyente.

Keywords: health risks, health and education, dengue outbreaks

JEL Classification: I12, I15, I20, D80

Suggested Citation

Barron, Kai and Gamboa, Luis Fernando and Rodríguez-Lesmes, Paul Andrés, Behavioural Response to a Sudden Health Risk: Dengue and Educational Outcomes in Colombia (September 9, 2016). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2927135 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2927135

Kai Barron (Contact Author)

WZB Berlin Social Science Center ( email )

Reichpietschufer 50
D-10785 Berlin, 10785
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://sites.google.com/site/kaibarron/

Luis Fernando Gamboa

Department of Economics, Universidad Jorge Tadeo Lozano ( email )

Cra 4 No. 22-61 Modulo 16 Of 310
Bogota, Bogotá 11001000
Colombia

Paul Andrés Rodríguez-Lesmes

University College London - Department of Economics ( email )

Gower Street
London WC1E 6BT, WC1E 6BT
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://https://sites.google.com/site/paulrodriguezlesmes/

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