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Centre for Health Economics and Policy Analysis


Visiting professor from Australia and Singapore to speak on the impact of health shocks on the spending dynamics of the elderly

23 Nov 2017

CHEPA’s last seminar of 2017 will be presented on December 6 by Dr. Terence Cheng, a Senior Lecturer at the School of Economics at the University of Adelaide, Australia, and an Affiliated Researcher at Singapore Management University.

His presentation, titled Monthly spending dynamics of the elderly following a health shock: Evidence from Singapore, will draw from research that used novel longitudinal data from 19 monthly waves of the Singapore Life Panel to examine the short-term dynamics of the effects that ‘health shocks’ have on household health and non-health spending by the elderly.

The health shocks studied were the diagnosis of cancer and heart problems, as well as less-severe conditions including diabetes and hypertension.

The research found that household income declines following a major shock for males but not females. As well, major health shocks lead to a decrease in households’ non-health expenditures that Dr. Cheng says is particularly pronounced for cancer and stroke sufferers, driven largely by reductions in leisure spending.

The research also found that the financial impact of major shocks on medical saving account balances occur to those without private health insurance, while the impact is on cash balances for privately insured individuals.

Dr. Cheng is a Senior Lecturer at the School of Economics, University of Adelaide and an Affiliated Researcher at the Centre for Research on the Economics of Ageing at Singapore Management University

He has a PhD in Health Economics from the Australian National University, and Masters and Bachelor degrees from the National University of Singapore.

Dr. Cheng’s current research activities are in the areas of health care insurance, medical labour market, and applied micro econometrics. His research often involves the application of econometric techniques to address problems with a strong public policy focus.

The seminar will be held on Wednesday, December 6 from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. in Communications Research Lab (CRL) B119. All are welcome to attend.

If you are unable to attend in person you are welcome to participate remotely online, using WebEx. To join the seminar online, copy and paste this link into your browser:

The password is CHEPAseminar

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