The Dynamic Relationship between the Health Sector, Health Knowledge and Health Outcomes

Steven F. Lehrer, Queen's University and National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)
Richard Tremblay, Université de Montréal

We examine both the short and long run effectiveness of a specific early childhood intervention on various developmental outcomes. This intervention was provided in schools and was designed to inform parents about the availability of medical and dental services in their community. Since these services are publicly provided at no fee, this intervention provides additional information on both the availability and benefits of health sector services. We use fifteen years of detailed administrative data from the health sector merged with a unique survey data set that tracks a cohort of 800 French-Canadian boys from birth through adolescence. Since the schools were randomly selected to offer this intervention we use the quasi-experimental in the availability of the program to address two questions. First does this additional information leads to increased use of health services. Second, we examine whether visits to the health sector affect several physical and mental health outcomes.

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Presented in Session 147: Policy and Child Health