An Econometric Analysis of the Mental-Health Effects of Major Events in the Life of Elderly Individuals

32 Pages Posted: 20 Dec 2001

See all articles by Maarten Lindeboom

Maarten Lindeboom

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam; Tinbergen Institute Amsterdam; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

France Portrait

VU University Amsterdam - Department of Economics

Gerard J. van den Berg

VU University Amsterdam - Department of Economics; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); IZA Institute of Labor Economics; Tinbergen Institute

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Date Written: December 2001

Abstract

Major events in the life of an elderly individual, such as retirement, a significant decrease in income, death of the spouse, disability, and a move to a nursing home, may affect the mental health status of the individual. For example, the individual may enter a prolonged depression. We investigate this using unique longitudinal panel data that track labour market behaviour, health status, and major life events, over time. To deal with endogenous aspects of these events we apply fixed effects estimation methods. We find some strikingly large effects of certain events on the occurrence of depression. We show that the results are of importance for the design of health care and labour market policy towards the elderly.

Keywords: Death, retirement, income loss, disease, depression, health indicators, widowhood, care, panel data, endogeneity, fixed effects

JEL Classification: J14, J26

Suggested Citation

Lindeboom, Maarten and Portrait, France and van den Berg, Gerard J., An Econometric Analysis of the Mental-Health Effects of Major Events in the Life of Elderly Individuals (December 2001). CEPR Discussion Paper No. 3091. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=294244

Maarten Lindeboom (Contact Author)

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam ( email )

De Boelelaan 1105
1081 HV Amsterdam
Netherlands
+31 20 444 6033 (Phone)
+31 20 444 6020 (Fax)

Tinbergen Institute Amsterdam

Gustav Mahlerplein 117
Amsterdam, 1082 MS
Netherlands

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

France Portrait

VU University Amsterdam - Department of Economics ( email )

De Boelelaan 1105
1081 HV Amsterdam
Netherlands
+31 20 444 6155 (Phone)

Gerard J. Van den Berg

VU University Amsterdam - Department of Economics ( email )

De Boelelaan 1105
1081 HV Amsterdam
Netherlands
+31 20 444 6132 (Phone)
+32 20 444 6020 (Fax)

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

Tinbergen Institute

Burg. Oudlaan 50
Rotterdam, 3062 PA
Netherlands

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