Document Type

Honors Project - Open Access


Advisor: Pete Ferderer


Health care costs account for 17% of US GDP and many programs and policies seek to reduce these costs. This paper focuses on exercise as preventive care due to its immense physiological benefits. I model the profit-maximizing choice of health insurance companies to subsidize exercise and the utility-maximizing choice of individuals to engage in exercise using a traditional principal-agent framework. I then use principles from behavioral economics and psychology to critique these models and provide further insight into understanding our underconsumption of such preventive services. I end with an evaluation of current programs and suggestions for improvement using empirical findings.



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