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Policy Area Papers on Healthcare



Financial Crises and Social Spending Financial Crises and Social Spending: The impact of the 2008–2009 crisis
Maureen Lewis & Marijn Verhoeven, World Economics, December 2010
Financial crises in developing and transition countries have often proven disruptive to policies and programmes due to procyclical trends in government spending growth. Given the importance and significant proportion of public budgets devoted to education and health, cu ... More


Public Health, Advertising and Reality Public Health, Advertising and Reality
Tim Ambler, World Economics, December 2009
Advertising is often blamed as the, or a, cause of public health problems such as misuse of alcohol or obesity. This paper suggests that the conclusions drawn by researchers owe more to their a priori attitudes than to an even-handed review of the evidence from both sid ... More


HIV/AIDS: A Growing Concern to Business HIV/AIDS: A Growing Concern to Business
David E. Bloom, Lakshmi Reddy Bloom, Paul De Lay, Fiona Paua, Richard Samans & Mark Weston, World Economics, December 2007
Recent years have seen calls for the private sector to become more involved in the fight against HIV/AIDS. Business has valuable skills and other resources that could assist government and civil society efforts, and some firms (although by no means all) also have strong ... More


Economic Drivers of Pharmaceutical Investment Location Economic Drivers of Pharmaceutical Investment Location
David Lewis, Edward Bramley-Harker & Joshua Farahnik, World Economics, September 2007
The article examines the range of economic factors that underlie decision making about the location of investments by research-based pharmaceutical companies. Set in the context of the commercial challenges facing the industry, structured interviews with 34 senior execu ... More


The Value of Vaccination The Value of Vaccination
David E. Bloom, David Canning & Mark Weston, World Economics, September 2005
Despite advances during the twentieth century, immunization coverage is far from universal and faces significant obstacles in both developing and developed countries. Weak policy emphasis on vaccination may be the result of the narrow view of its benefits in scientific ... More


Measures of Progress and Other Tall Stories Measures of Progress and Other Tall Stories: From income to anthropometrics
John Komlos & Brian Snowdon, World Economics, June 2005
How should progress be measured? Today, economists and economic historians have available a rich array of data for a large number of countries on which to base their response to this important question. The need for alternative measures of the standard of living is part ... More


The Anomalous Case of HIV/AIDS The Anomalous Case of HIV/AIDS: A critical response to Clive Bell & Maureen Lewis, ‘The Economic Implications of Epidemics Old and New’
Barrie Craven, Christian Fiala, Etienne de Harven & Gordon Stewart, World Economics, March 2005
In a recent issue of World Economics (Vol. 5, No. 4, 2004) Bell and Lewis discuss ‘The Economic Implications of Epidemics Old and New’. In their article those authors examine several historic and recent epidemics including HIV/AIDS, currently regarded as the greatest ... More


The Economic Implications of Epidemics Old and New The Economic Implications of Epidemics Old and New
Clive Bell & Maureen Lewis, World Economics, December 2004
The outbreak of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) in the winter of 2002–03 raised the specter of a new, unknown and uncontrollable infectious disease that spreads quickly and is often fatal. Certain branches of economic activity, notably tourism, felt its impa ... More


The Health and Wealth of Africa The Health and Wealth of Africa
David E. Bloom & David Canning, World Economics, June 2004
Among Africa’s problems, chronic poverty and poor health stand out. Traditional development thinking has maintained that health improvements are a consequence of income growth. But new evidence shows that investing in health, with the aid of the international communi ... More


How Demographic Change can Bolster Economic Performance in Developing Countries How Demographic Change can Bolster Economic Performance in Developing Countries
David E. Bloom & David Canning, World Economics, December 2003
Falling mortality rates spurred by medical, nutritional and lifestyle changes have spurred a ‘demographic transition’ in a majority of the world’s countries. As couples realize their children are more likely to survive, they need, and eventually have, fewer of them t ... More


Regulating Tobacco in the United States Regulating Tobacco in the United States: The Government and the Courtroom
Jonathan Gruber, World Economics, September 2002
There has been a dramatic turn of events against the tobacco industry in the past few years, raising the question of the appropriate future path for smoking policy in the US. This paper discusses the theory and evidence on regulation of smoking. The author begins by ... More


Why is There No AIDS Vaccine? Why is There No AIDS Vaccine?: A new economic explanation
Pedro Rey Biel, World Economics, December 2001
This paper provides an economic explanation for the non-existence of a vaccine against AIDS. It comments on previously claimed economic reasons why private laboratories do not have incentives to invest in an AIDS vaccine and provides a new one: private companies alre ... More