Intergenerational transmission of non-communicable chronic diseases

Goulão, Catarina and Pérez-Barahona, Agustín (2014) Intergenerational transmission of non-communicable chronic diseases. Journal of Public Economic Theory, 16 (3). pp. 467-490.

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We introduce a theoretical framework that contributes to the understanding of non-communicable chronic diseases’ (NCDs) epidemics: even if NCDs are non-infectious diseases, they may spread due to the social transmission of unhealthy activities such as unhealthy diet, physical inactivity, and smoking. In particular, we study the intergenerational dimension of this mechanism. We find that, due to the social transmission of NCDs, agents choose lower health conditions and higher unhealthy activities than what is socially optimal. Taxes on unhealthy activities, that may subsidize health investments, can be used to restore the social optimum. Finally, our model is consistent with the existence of regional asymmetries regarding the prevalence of obesity and NCDs.

Item Type: Article
Date: June 2014
Refereed: Yes
Divisions: TSE-R (Toulouse)
Site: UT1
Date Deposited: 09 Jul 2014 17:32
Last Modified: 24 Jan 2019 00:07

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