Bismarck's Health Insurance and the Mortality Decline

  title={Bismarck's Health Insurance and the Mortality Decline},
  author={Stefan Bauernschuster and Anastasia Driva and Erik Hornung},
  journal={Health Economics eJournal},
We study the impact of social health insurance on mortality. Using the introduction of compulsory health insurance in the German Empire in 1884 as a natural experiment, we estimate difference-in-differences and regional fixed effects models exploiting variation in eligibility for insurance across occupations. Our findings suggest that Bismarck’s health insurance generated a significant mortality reduction. Despite the absence of antibiotics and most vaccines, we find the results to be largely… 

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