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Caring for carers? The effect of public subsidies on the wellbeing of unpaid carers

Costa-Font, Joan ORCID: 0000-0001-7174-7919, D'Amico, Francesco and Vilaplana-Prieto, Cristina (2023) Caring for carers? The effect of public subsidies on the wellbeing of unpaid carers. American Journal of Health Economics, 9 (4). 487 - 522. ISSN 2332-3493

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Identification Number: 10.1086/723539


We study the effect of long-term care subsidies and supports on the well-being of unpaid caregivers. We draw on evidence from a policy intervention, which universalized previously means-tested caregiving supports in Scotland, known as free personal care (FPC). We document causal evidence of an increase in the well-being (happiness) of unpaid carers after the introduction of FPC. Our estimates suggest economically relevant improvements in happiness (12 percentage point increase in subjective well-being) among caregivers exposed to FPC and who provide at least 35 hours of care per week. Consistently, these results are larger among women and non-actively employed caregivers (17 percentage point increase in happiness). Estimates are not driven by selection into caregiving; they are explained by income effects of FPC among caregivers.

Item Type: Article
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Additional Information: © 2023 American Society of Health Economists
Divisions: Health Policy
Personal Social Services Research Unit
Subjects: H Social Sciences
JEL classification: I - Health, Education, and Welfare > I1 - Health > I18 - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health
J - Labor and Demographic Economics > J2 - Time Allocation, Work Behavior, and Employment Determination and Creation; Human Capital; Retirement > J22 - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
Date Deposited: 10 Oct 2022 10:15
Last Modified: 16 Jun 2024 16:45

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