The effect of retirement on healthcare utilization: Evidence from China

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We examine the effect of retirement on healthcare utilization in China using longitudinal data. We use a nonparametric fuzzy regression discontinuity design, exploiting the statutory retirement age in urban China as a source of exogenous variation in retirement. In contrast to previous results for developed countries, we find that in China retirement increases healthcare utilization. This increase can be attributed to deteriorating health and in particular to the reduced opportunity cost of time after retirement. For the sample as a whole, income is not a dominating mechanism. People with low education, however, are more likely to forego recommended inpatient care after retirement.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)165-177
JournalJournal of Health Economics
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2018


  • retirement
  • healthcare utilization
  • fuzzy regression discontinuity design
  • China


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