Mölenberg FJM, Lopes FV. Natural experiments: A Nobel Prize awarded research design for strengthening causal inference on global health challenges. J Glob Health. 2022;12:03005. Published 2022 Apr 28. doi:10.7189/jogh.12.03005

Lopes FV, Riumallo Herl CJ, Mackenbach JP, Van Ourti T. Patient cost-sharing, mental health care and inequalities: A population-based natural experiment at the transition to adulthood. Soc Sci Med. 2022 Jan 29;296:114741. doi: 10.1016/j.socscimed.2022.114741 | Dissemination and media coverage here

Valente de Almeida S, Costa E, Lopes FV, Santos JV, Pita Barros P. Concerns and adjustments: How the Portuguese population met COVID-19. PLoS One. 2020 Oct 14;15(10):e0240500.

Miguel LS, Lopes FV, Pinheiro B, Wang J, Xu R, Pellissier J, Laires PA. Cost. Effectiveness of Pembrolizumab for Advanced Melanoma Treatment in Portugal. Value Health. 2017 Sep;20(8):1065-1073

Policy report:

“Identifying smarter policies during the COVID-19 crisis to reduce health inequities in Rotterdam”, joint with Famke Molenberg, Eline de Jong, Marielle Beenackers, Joost Oude Groeniger, Wilma Jansen and Frank Van Lenthe

Work in Progress

  • “Impact of supported housing on health and labour outcomes of mental ill patients” , first author, joint with Tom Van Ourti, Sam Harper, Bastian Ravestjein and Pieter Bakx (accepted in Health Economics)


Societies face the challenge of providing appropriate arrangements for individuals who need living support due to their mental and substance use disorders. We estimate the effects of eligibility to the Dutch supported housing program (Beschermd Wonen), which offers a structured living environment in the community as an intermediate alternative to independent housing and inpatient care. For this, we use exogenous variation in eligibility based on conditionally random assignment of applications to assessors, and the universe of applications to supported housing in the Netherlands, linked to rich administrative data. Supported housing eligibility increases the probability of moving into supported housing and decreases the use of home care, resulting in higher total care expenditures. This increase is primarily due to the costs of supported housing, but potentially also higher consumption of curative mental health care. Supported housing eligibility reduces the total personal income and income from work. Findings do also suggest lower participation in the labour market by the individuals granted eligibility, but the labour participation of their parents increases in the long-run. Our study highlights the trade-offs of access to supported housing for those at the margin of eligibility, informing the design of long-term mental health care systems around the world.

  • From mental health need to treatment outcome: inequalities within specialist mental health care in the Netherlands”, first author, joint with Carlos J Riumallo Herl, Bastian Ravestjein, Tom Van Ourti

  • ”Medicaid expansion and the mechanics of increased access to organ transplant”, joint with Sara Machado

  • “Does the presence of a psychologist in the primary care reduce the anti-depressive therapy? Evidence from Portugal”, joint with Joana Pestana

  • ”Opening up to death? A Discrete Choice Experiment on COVID-19” , joint with Luís Filipe, Eduardo Costa, João Vasco Santos, Sara Almeida and Joana Gomes da Costa


  • European Journal of Health Economics (2021)

  • Health Policy (2020)