The Policy Implications of Price Sensitivity of Demand for Health Insurance – Evidence from Community Based Health Insurance in Rwanda (job market paper),
The Policy Implications of Price Sensitivity of Demand for Health Insurance – Evidence from Community Based Health Insurance in Rwanda (job market paper), in this paper I use the implementation of a new premium subsidy scheme for the Community Based Health Insurance (CBHI) in Rwanda as a quasi-experiment to estimate the impact of premium subsidies on two policy relevant outcomes: insurance coverage and financial sustainability. This is the first study to simulate the effects of insurance subsidies on financial sustainability, using a unique data set on insurer costs. First, I estimate price elasticity of the demand for insurance exploiting the variation in premium costs over time and between households created by the policy in a linear probability model with individual fixed effects. Second, I use the estimated price sensitivity to simulate the predicted take-up levels related to a number of different subsidy schemes, taking into account the potential effects of adverse selection. I show that the demand for health insurance is not inelastic, but that the price sensitivity varies between different socioeconomic groups. Furthermore, a positive slope of the average cost curve indicates that the insurance market is adversely selected. The results suggest that premium subsidies only have a modest effect on the take-up of insurance, but that it might affect the composition of individuals deciding to enroll in the insurance. Furthermore, simulations of different premium subsidy schemes indicate that the monetary implications of adverse selection are limited, specifically in relation to targeted subsidies.
The Role of Childcare on Female Firm Productivity: Evidence from Mexico
This paper evaluates whether lack of access to affordable childcare represent a bottleneck for female entrepreneurship and efficiency. I explore the roll-out of a childcare program in Mexico on female entrepreneurship. I use a triple-difference design with treatment intensity that varies across municipalities, and compare outcomes for women with children just below and above the eligibility threshold for the program. The findings suggest that an increase in access to subsidized childcare led to an increase in hours worked per week for women with more than secondary education, and for women in the service sector. This indicates that the effects of the reform are concentrated among women that were initially better off. Suggestive evidence show that constraints to productivity – such as home-based production- are reduced for treated women.
Asymmetric information in the Household: Fathers and Child Welfare (with Anja Benshaul-Tolonen and Eeshani Kandpal),
In this paper we test if there is information asymmetry between men and women regarding child health, and evaluate its potential effects on the allocation of resources within the household. This study uses a randomized control trial to create exogenous variation in the access to information on child health between fathers. In collaboration with the cash transfer program PROSPERA, men that live in treated households are invited to attend regular health workshops on topics related to child health. The impact of the information intervention is evaluated using experimental methods that solicit revealed preference by measuring changes in spending. We hypothesize that reducing information constraints could lead to a more efficient allocation of resources within the household. The pilot study was conducted in April-May 2018, and the full RCT is planned to launch September 2018.