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Dr. F.R.M. (France) Portrait

  • Telefoon:+31 20 59 82545
  • Kamernr:u-453, 10a-64
  • E-mail:f.r.m.portrait@vu.nl
  • Onderdeel:faculteit der aard- en levenswetenschappen (sectie gezondheidseconomie- en doelmatigheidsonderzoek), faculteit der economische wetenschappen en bedrijfskunde (economics)

Name: Portrait
First name: France
T: +31 20 59 82545 (direct)
T: +31 20 59 87225 (secretary)
E: france.portrait@falw.vu.nl
Room: U-451


I am in charge of two courses of the Bachelor Health sciences, namely:
- Third-year course “Health Economics”
- First-year course “Introduction in Health Economics”

I am also participate in two other courses, namely:
- Master course “Advanced Health Economics”
- Pre-master course “Health Economics”

Academic training:

University of Aix-Marseille (France)
Main subject: Quantitative Economics and Econometrics

Tinbergen Graduate School September 2000
Main subject: Doctoral program in Economics

Title: “Long-term care service for the Dutch elderly: an investigation into the process of utilization”
VU University Amsterdam 31/10/2000
Supervisor: Prof. dr. M. Lindeboom 

Research Projects:

As a post-doc, I first looked at the effects of spousal bereavement on health and mortality at advanced ages. We specified a joint model for the lifetimes of spouses and the dynamic evolution of health, allowing spousal death to have causal effects on health and mortality of the survivor. We find strong instantaneous effects of bereavement on mortality and on certain aspects of health.

A related project assesses the effects of major life events on mental health at old ages. Central in this project is the endogeneity issue of these events. We are currently working on a related project investigating the effect of early life conditions on the over-all effects of major life events on cognitive health at old ages. In Portrait, Alessie, Deeg (2008), we investigate the long-term effects of early life conditions on functional status of older individuals.

In van den Berg, Lindeboom and Portrait (2006), we estimate, using the HSN data, flexible duration models where the individual’s mortality rate depends on early life and current conditions, and individual characteristics. We find a significant positive effect of being born in a recession on mortality at age 50. We are currently working on a project in which we investigate the magnitude of the effects for major causes of mortality, such as cardiovascular mortality and cancer mortality.

In van den Berg, Lindeboom and Portrait (2007), we investigate whether exposure to a nutritional shock in early life negatively affects longevity at older ages We use the HSN data and instrument early life nutritional conditions by exposure to the 1846-47 Dutch Potato famine. Men exposed to the famine early in life have significant lower residual life expectancies at age 50.

There are evidence that reproductive success is rooted in early life conditions and that later life mortality is affected by fertility. We are currently working on a project in which we investigate to which extent the early life (socio-economic) conditions affect fertility outcomes (e.g. age at which the first child is born or the number of children who survived infancy), controlling for changes in macro-conditions in childhood and adolescence.

Selected publications

Pot, AM, F Portrait, G Visser, M Puts, MI Broese van Groenou and D Deeg “Utilization of acute and long-term care in the last year of life: Comparison with survivors in a population-based study”, BMC Health Services Research 2009, 9:139

Portrait, F, R Alessie and D Deeg “Do early-life conditions explain Health status at older ages? An application to Dutch trends in functional limitations”, Journal of Population Economics, published online 2008 DOI No. 10.1007/s00148-008-0213-8

van den Berg, G, M Lindeboom and F Portrait (2006) “Economic conditions early in life and individual mortality” American Economic Review 96:290-302.

Lindeboom, M, A Llena-Nozal and F Portrait (2004) “The effects of Work on Mental Health: does occupation matter?”, Health Economics, 13:1045-1062.

van den Berg, G, M Lindeboom and F Portrait (2002) “An econometric analysis of the mental-health effects of major events in the life of older individuals” Health Economics 11(6):505-520

Deeg, D, M Lindebooom and F Portrait (2002) “Health Profiles and Profile-specific Health Expectancies of Older Women and Men: The Netherlands” Journal of Women and Aging, Special Issue “International Perspectives on Health Expectancies for Older Women”.

Portrait, F, M Lindeboom and D Deeg (2001) “Life Expectancies in Specific Health States – Results from a Joint Model of Health Status and Mortality of Older Persons” Demography 38:525-538.

Portrait, F, M Lindeboom and D Deeg (2000) “The Use of Long-Term Care Services by the Dutch Elderly”, Health Economics 9(6):513-531.

Portrait, F, M Lindeboom and D Deeg (1999) “Health and Mortality of the Elderly: The Grade of Membership Method, Classification and Determination”, Health Economics 8:441-458.


Link to list of all publications at the VU

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