Timing matters: the impact of response measures on COVID-19-related hospitalization and death rates in Germany and Switzerland
Martin Huber () and
Henrika Langen ()
Additional contact information
Henrika Langen: University of Fribourg, Bd. de Pérolles 90
Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics, 2020, vol. 156, issue 1, 1-19
Abstract We assess the impact of the timing of lockdown measures implemented in Germany and Switzerland on cumulative COVID-19-related hospitalization and death rates. Our analysis exploits the fact that the epidemic was more advanced in some regions than in others when certain lockdown measures came into force, based on measuring health outcomes relative to the region-specific start of the epidemic and comparing outcomes across regions with earlier and later start dates. When estimating the effect of the relative timing of measures, we control for regional characteristics and initial epidemic trends by linear regression (Germany and Switzerland), doubly robust estimation (Germany), or synthetic controls (Switzerland). We find for both countries that a relatively later exposure to the measures entails higher cumulative hospitalization and death rates on region-specific days after the outbreak of the epidemic, suggesting that an earlier imposition of measures is more effective than a later one. For Germany, we further evaluate curfews (as introduced in a subset of states) based on cross-regional variation. We do not find any effects of curfews on top of the federally imposed contact restriction that banned groups of more than 2 individuals.
Keywords: COVID-19; Pandemic; Social distancing; Lockdown; Treatment effect; Synthetic control (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I18 I12 H12 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (1) Track citations by RSS feed
Downloads: (external link)
http://link.springer.com/10.1186/s41937-020-00054-w Abstract (text/html)
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.
Export reference: BibTeX
RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan)
Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:spr:sjecst:v:156:y:2020:i:1:d:10.1186_s41937-020-00054-w
Ordering information: This journal article can be ordered from
Access Statistics for this article
Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics is currently edited by Rafael Lalive
More articles in Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics from Springer, Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics Contact information at EDIRC.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by Sonal Shukla () and Springer Nature Abstracting and Indexing ().