Accounting for Fetal Origins: Health Capital vs. Health Deficits

from Health Economics at on July 17, 2017 at 06:33AM

The Fetal Origins hypothesis has received considerable empirical support, both within epidemiology and economics. The present study compares the ability of two rival theoretical frameworks in accounting for the kind of path dependence implied by the Fetal Origins Hypothesis. We argue that while the health capital model due to Grossman (Journal of Political Economy, 80(2), 223-255, 1972) is irreconcilable with Fetal Origins of late-in-life health outcomes, the more recent health deficit model due to Dalgaard and Strulik (Journal of the European Economic Association, 12(3), 672-701, 2014) can generate shock amplification consistent with the hypothesis.