Chapter 3

Health and Economic Growth

David N. Weil,    Brown University and NBER, USA


This chapter examines the relationship between health and economic growth. Across countries, income per capita is highly correlated with health, as measured by life expectancy or a number of other indicators. Within countries, there is also a correlation between people’s health and income. Finally, over time, the historical evolution of cross-country health differences has largely paralleled the evolution of income differences, with the exception that in the last half century the convergence of health has been much faster than the convergence of income. How are health and income related? Theoretically, there is good reason to believe that causality ...

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