DP8976 Do Public Health Interventions Crowd Out Private Health Investments? Malaria Control Policies in Eritrea
|Author(s):||Pedro Carneiro, Tewolde Ghebremeskel, Joseph Keating, Andrea Locatelli|
|Publication Date:||May 2012|
|Keyword(s):||Crowding-Out, Development, Health, Malaria|
|Programme Areas:||Development Economics|
|Link to this Page:||cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=8976|
It is often argued that engaging in indoor residual spraying (IRS) in areas with high coverage of mosquito bed nets may discourage net ownership and use. This is just a case of a public program inducing perverse incentives. We analyze new data from a randomized control trial conducted in Eritrea which surprisingly shows the opposite: IRS encouraged net acquisition and use. Our evidence points to the role of imperfect information. The introduction of IRS may have made the problem of malaria more salient, leading to a change in beliefs about its importance and to an increase in private health investments.