Retirement and Health

There is enormous interest in the effect of retirement on health, especially given the aging of the population and reforms to retirement policies underway in the United States and other developed countries. However, the interdependence between health outcomes and retirement status, which commonly leads individuals in poorer health to retire earlier, means that it is difficult to disentangle this relationship.  With Tim Moore, Fitzpatrick contributes to this literature by examining how mortality changes in the U.S. at age 62, when most individuals become eligible for Social Security Retirement and Survivors Insurance (“Social Security”). They find that mortality increases most at age 62 for those that are most likely to leave the workforce, leading us to conclude that, for men, deciding to retire at age 62 may have negative consequences for their health.


Selected Publications

Fitzpatrick, Maria D. and Timothy Moore. 2018. “The Mortality Effects of Retirement: Evidence from Social Security Eligibility at Age 62.” Journal of Public Economics. 157: 121-37

Fitzpatrick, Maria D. 2014. “Retiree Health Insurance for Public School Employees: Does it Affect Retirement?” Journal of Health Economics. 38: 88-98.