Children's health behavior and new preventative health products in rural China

Yu-hsuan Su, National Chengchi University (NCCU)
Shinn-Shyr Wang, National Chengchi University (NCCU)
Juei-Chi Wang, National Chengchi University (NCCU)

How to help children develop correct health habits and improve people's health to eventually promote the quality of labor productivity is an important issue for the population of developing countries. Understanding how consumers adopt and demand new health products can also help governments or NGOs design more effective interventions. This study utilizes surveys and randomized field experiments conducted in a rural village in China to study the impact of oral health promotion education on children's demand for dental floss picks and their health behavior. Preliminary results show that children are highly sensitive to price. Children who learned the oral health promotion intervention - learning to sing Tooth Brushing Song - are willing to pay higher on dental floss picks, but the actual quantity bought in the experiment was not significantly higher than the control group. In a follow-up survey, we find that students increase the frequency of tooth brushing on average, but the spillover effects are not as strong as in the literature. More risk-loving students are more likely to adopt the new product but less likely to tell their family about the product. We find no evidence that time preferenceaffects the demand or the health behavior.

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 Presented in Session 109. Children's health: Determinants and policy approaches