Ruhr Economic Papers

Ruhr Economic Papers #426

Short- and Medium-term Effects of Informal Care Provision on Health

by Hendrik Schmitz and Matthias Westphal

University of Duisburg-Essen, 07/2013, 32 S./p., 8 Euro, ISBN 978-3-86788-482-2 DOI: 10.4419/86788482



This paper estimates the effect of informal care provision on female caregiver’s health. We use data from the German Socio-economic Panel and assess effects up to seven years after care provision. A simulation-based sensitivity analysis scrutinizes the sensitivity of the results with respect to potential deviations from the conditional independence assumption in the regression adjusted matching approach. The results suggest that there is a considerable short-term eff ect of informal care provision on mental health which fades out over time. Five years after care provision there are no signifi cant effects left. Both short- and medium-term effects on physical health are much smaller and insignificant throughout.

JEL-Classification: I10, I18, C21, J14

Keywords: Informal care; regression adjusted matching; propensity score matching; mental health; physical health