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Title
Physicians, sick leave certificates, and patients' subsequent employment outcomes
AuthorAhammer, Alexander
Published in
Health Economics, 2018, Vol. 27, Issue 6, page 923-936
PublishedWiley, 2018
LanguageEnglish
Document typeJournal Article
ISSN1099-1050
URNurn:nbn:at:at-ubl:3-543 Persistent Identifier (URN)
DOI10.1002/hec.3646 
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 The work is publicly available
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Physicians, sick leave certificates, and patients' subsequent employment outcomes [1.54 mb]
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Abstract (English)

I analyze how general practitioners (GPs) indirectly affect their patients' employment outcomes by deciding the length of sick leaves. I use an instrumental variables framework where spell durations are identified through supplyside certification measures. I find that a day of sick leave certified only because the worker's GP has a high propensity to certify sick leaves decreases the employment probability persistently by 0.450.69 percentage points, but increases the risk of becoming unemployed by 0.280.44 percentage points. These effects are mostly driven by workers with low job tenure. Several robustness checks show that endogenous matching between patients and GPs does not impair identification. My results bear important implications for doctors: Whenever medically justifiable, certifying shorter sick leaves to protect the employment status of the patient may be beneficial.

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CC-BY-NC-ND-License (4.0)Creative Commons Attribution - NonCommercial - NoDerivatives 4.0 International License