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The labor market effects of national health insurance: evidence from Taiwan

Abstract

This paper investigates the impacts of national health insurance on the labor market, by considering the case of Taiwan, which implemented national health insurance in March 1995. Taiwan’s national health insurance is financed by premiums, which are proportional to an employee’s salary. These premiums may introduce distortions to the labor market. Based on repeated cross-sections of individual data we find that, on average, private sector employees’ work hours declined relative to their public sector counterparts, whereas their relative wage rates were almost unchanged with the introduction of national health insurance. The results suggest that neither private sector employers nor their employees were able to shift their premium burden to each other.

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Correspondence to Kamhon Kan.

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Responsible editor: Junsen Zhang

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Kan, K., Lin, YL. The labor market effects of national health insurance: evidence from Taiwan. J Popul Econ 22, 311–350 (2009). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00148-007-0135-x

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Keywords

  • National health insurance
  • Labor supply
  • Difference-in-difference

JEL Classification

  • J22
  • J31
  • I38