Act Early to Prevent Infections and Save Lives: Causal Impact of Diagnostic Efficiency on the COVID-19 Pandemic
Zhangfeng Jin (),
Till Bärnighausen and
David E. Bloom
No 931, GLO Discussion Paper Series from Global Labor Organization (GLO)
This paper examines the causal impact of diagnostic efficiency on the COVID-19 pandemic in China. Using an instrumental variable approach, we show that a 1-day decrease in the time taken to confirm the first case in a city publicly led to 9.4% and 12.7% reductions in COVID-19 prevalence and mortality over the subsequent six months, respectively. The impact was larger for cities that are farther from the COVID-19 epicenter, are exposed to less migration, have more responsive public health systems, and have higher-capacity utilization of health systems. Social distancing and a less burdened health system are likely underlying mechanisms.
Keywords: Diagnostic Efficiency; Information Disclosure; Social Distancing; COVID-19; China (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D83 H75 I12 I18 J61 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cna, nep-hea and nep-isf
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Working Paper: Act Early to Prevent Infections and Save Lives: Causal Impact of Diagnostic Efficiency on the COVID-19 Pandemic (2020)
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:zbw:glodps:931
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