Malaria, productivity and access to treatment

Clinic in Nigeria Photo by Curt Carnemark, World Bank

Clinic in Nigeria

Photo by Curt Carnemark, World Bank

Experimental evidence from Nigeria

Dr Andrew Dillon, International Food Policy Research Institute

Start Date: Aug 2012   |   End Date: Aug 2014

Research Councils UK project page

Blog: How malaria testing can get more people back into work

The consequences of ill health for productivity and economic development are presumed to be severe yet the rigorous evidence base for such a linkage is small.

For this research project a mobile health clinic was established on a plantation and used an exogenously determined order to test and treat workers. Despite the positive effect of treatment, we found that there are low rates of workers seeking curative and preventative treatments. To understand the reason for this, this study will offer access to malaria treatment and insurance at varied prices to estimate its effect on take-up and frequency of health care.

In another study phase, the effect of treatment on both worker productivity and physical activity will be measured. We will then be able to estimate the effects of malaria on physical activity in general, which will allow us to extend our findings in this context to other physical occupations in endemic areas.