On Monday December 19th, 2016 Martin Fischer will present his research project titled:
Does increased schooling improve and equalise health? Results from two quasi-experiments in Sweden
This study examines the causal impact of years of schooling on health and health inequality exploiting two Swedish school reforms that increase compulsory years of schooling from 7 to 8 or from 7 to 9 years as quasi-experiments. While the first reform is a pure extension of the compulsory years of education the latter additionally changed the school system to a comprehensive school system. We utilise health data from both population based registers and a large survey dataset to investigate the impact on the level of health and socioeconomic inequalities in mortality, health utility, bad health and smoking, mental health, cancer and obesity.
This paper presents the results of a randomized study of a home visiting programme implemented in Germany for low-income, first-time mothers. A major goal of the programme is to improve the participants’ economic self-sufficiency and family planning. I use administrative data from the German social security system and detailed telephone surveys to examine the effects of the intervention on maternal employment, welfare benefits, and household composition. The study reveals that the intervention unintentionally decreased maternal employment and increased subsequent births. These results contradict those of previous studies from the United States, where home visiting programmes successfully increased employment and decreased fertility. Low employment incentives and generous welfare state arrangements for disadvantaged mothers with young children in Germany may explain the different results.
From dusk till dawn - are nights a dangerous time for hospital admission?
This paper addresses the question whether patients have a higher risk of death if they are admitted to a hospital during the night rather than during the day. Since hospital resources and stuffing are reduced at nights, both numerically and with regard to available expertise on site, there is a theoretical channel, explaining why night admissions might be more dangerous. However, since patients admitted during the night are special in terms of urgency and admission time, simple comparisons of the groups may be misleading. To facilitate comparison, the empirical analysis compares patients who suffer from specific diseases considered as emergency conditions, i.e. upper gastrointestinal bleeding, or acute myocardial infarction and is based on regression adjusted propensity score matching as identification strategy. A full sample of all inpatients in Germany for the years 2005 to 2007 is used. Additionally, I execute two sensitivity analyses to determine how unobserved heterogeneity influences the results. Although the results show that patients admitted during the night have a higher risk of death, sensitivity analyses suggest, that this result is likely to be driven by unobserved patient heterogeneity.