The Relationship between Health Insurance and Labor Force Decisions: An Analysis of Married Women

Posted: 19 Jun 1998

See all articles by Barbara Steinberg Schone

Barbara Steinberg Schone

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services - Center for Cost and Financing Studies - Agency for Health Care Policy & Research (AHCPR); Georgetown Public Policy Institute

Jessica Primoff Vistnes

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services - Agency for Healthcare Research & Quality (AHRQ) - Center for Financing, Access & Cost Trends

Date Written: December 1997

Abstract

Understanding family decision making regarding health insurance and labor supply is of particular importance for investigating the effects of policy proposals to improve access to health insurance coverage for workers and their families. In this paper, we estimate a model of labor supply (full time work, part time work or no work) and job choice (the choice of a job that offers health insurance) on a sample of married women from the 1987 National Medical Expenditure Survey (NMES). We use a simultaneous framework that controls for the endogenous probability that the husband is offered insurance. This approach addresses biases that may arise when estimating the propensity to be offered insurance on a selected sample of working married women. In addition, it controls for the effect of part-time and full-time work status on offer propensities. We find evidence that health insurance affects both the wife's labor supply and job choice decisions. Women whose husbands are not offered insurance are more likely to work than other women and are more likely to work in jobs providing health insurance.

JEL Classification: J2, I10

Suggested Citation

Steinberg Schone, Barbara and Primoff Vistnes, Jessica, The Relationship between Health Insurance and Labor Force Decisions: An Analysis of Married Women (December 1997). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=99668

Barbara Steinberg Schone (Contact Author)

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services - Center for Cost and Financing Studies - Agency for Health Care Policy & Research (AHCPR) ( email )

2101 E. Jefferson St., Suite 500
Rockville, MD 20852
United States
301-594-1406, ext. 1470 (Phone)
301-594-2166 (Fax)

Georgetown Public Policy Institute ( email )

3520 Prospect Street, NW
Washington, DC 20007
United States
202 687 1147 (Phone)

Jessica Primoff Vistnes

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services - Agency for Healthcare Research & Quality (AHRQ) - Center for Financing, Access & Cost Trends ( email )

540 Gaither Road
Rockville, MD 20850
United States
301-594-1400 (Phone)

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