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The public health costs of job loss

Andreas Kuhn, Rafael Lalive () and Josef Zweimüller ()

Journal of Health Economics, 2009, vol. 28, issue 6, 1099-1115

Abstract: We study the short-run effect of involuntary job loss on comprehensive measures of public health costs. We focus on job loss induced by plant closure, thereby addressing the reverse causality problem as job displacements due to plant closure are unlikely caused by workers' health status, but potentially have important effects on individual workers' health and associated public health costs. Our empirical analysis is based on a rich data set from Austria providing comprehensive information on various types of health care costs and day-by-day work history at the individual level. Our central findings are (i) overall expenditures on medical treatments are not strongly affected by job displacement; (ii) job loss significantly increases expenditures for antidepressants and related drugs, as well as for hospitalizations due to mental health problems for men (but not for women) although the effects are economically rather small; and (iii) sickness benefits strongly increase due to job loss.

Keywords: Social; cost; of; unemployment; Health; Job; loss; Plant; closure (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2009
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Working Paper: The Public Health Costs of Job Loss (2009) Downloads
Working Paper: The Public Health Costs of Job Loss (2009) Downloads
Working Paper: The Public Health Costs of Job Loss (2009) Downloads
Working Paper: The public health costs of job loss (2009) Downloads
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Journal of Health Economics is currently edited by J. P. Newhouse, A. J. Culyer, R. Frank, K. Claxton and T. McGuire

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