The impact of resource inflows on child health: Evidence from South Africa

Type Working Paper - Working Papers
Title The impact of resource inflows on child health: Evidence from South Africa
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2001
Page numbers 1-24
This paper investigates the changes to health care facilities and the nutritional status of Black children during the first 5 years of democratic rule in South Africa. Using panel data on Black households living in KwaZulu-Natal in 1993 and 1998, this study examines the key\ndeterminants of child health over this period. Unlike previous studies, this exercise estimates the child health equations using a 3SLS simultaneous equations framework that recognises the endogeneity of the resource variables. It departs from the conventional unitary model in distinguishing between the various resource components, and allowing for their mutual dependence. A key result, with considerable policy appeal, is that the nature of income effect on child health varies sharply between the various resource components. For example, in 1998, female earned income and female pensions have the most beneficial effects on child health. In contrast, male earned income and male pensions impact negatively on child health. The results point to the need to target the resource inflows at particular groups within the household in order to maximise their positive impact on child health. While the immediate context of this study is post apartheid South Africa, the results have implications that extend beyond the frontiers of that country.

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