Health maintenance by workers in rural and urban production structures
Mwabu, Germano M
O’Connell, Stephen A
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The paper explores some interactions between production environment and health maintenance by workers in developing countries. We argue that rural occupations, being less highly specialized than occupations in urban areas, offer members of rural households a range of productive activities requiring different combinations of health capital and other inputs. Urban occupations, in contrast, typically admit a much smaller range of activities. We use a highly stylized model of a worker’s allocation of labor time to demonstrate that the non-specialized production environment of the rural worker raises the opportunity cost of health care at low levels of health, and thus weakens incentives for curative health maintenance. Health policy implications of this result in the context of developing countries are drawn.
- School of Economics