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COVID’s health spillovers


Ziedan Simon and Wing (2023), have produced interesting paper

The collapse in U.S. health-care consumption during the pandemic offers insight into key economic questions about waste and productivity. We compare outpatient appointments for 30 days prior to and after the Covid-19 emergency declaration using linked mortality and Electronic Medical Records. The cancellation rate of appointments was 77% higher among people who had appointments during the shutdown. According to the intent-to-treat estimates of Intent to Treat, having a scheduled appointment right after an emergency declaration raised one year mortality rates by 4 deaths for every 10,000. The instrumental variable estimates show that cancelling an appointment increases one-year mortality by 29.7 deaths for every 10,000 compliers. This implies that a 10% increase of health care appointments decreases mortality rates by 2.9%. Two mechanisms explain the mortality effects. One is a sub-population of compliers with high marginal health benefits, and another is a cascade or delayed follow-up care lasting for approximately 3 months. In 2021, healthcare spending accounted for 19.7%. Controlling health spending…

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