Public health for paediatricians:How can behavioural economics help to make paediatric practice more effective?

Arch Dis Child Educ Pract Ed. 2019 Jun;104(3):146-149. doi: 10.1136/archdischild-2018-315229. Epub 2018 Sep 15.


Understanding the principles of behavioural economics is important for paediatricians because behavioural economics offers ideas to help improve the quality of paediatric care. It can also be used to inform health interventions/policy at a population level. This paper summarises key behavioural economic concepts such as bounded rationality, bounded willpower and social influence, explaining how they can be used to shape healthy behaviours in children and adolescents. Case studies of interventions that have used behavioural economics principles (sometimes called 'nudge theory') are provided.

Keywords: behavioural economics; children; general paediatrics; nudge; young people.

MeSH terms

  • Choice Behavior
  • Economics, Behavioral*
  • Health Behavior*
  • Humans
  • Motivation
  • Pediatrics*
  • Physician-Patient Relations*