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Welfare reform, time limits, and infant health

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Author Info

  • Leonard, Jonathan
  • Mas, Alexandre

Abstract

This paper offers evidence that welfare time limits contributed to a deterioration of infant health. We use the fact that the dates at which TANF recipients were first subject to timing out varied by state. We show that by 2000 there was a marked difference in TANF duration spells depending on whether the state employed the 60-month Federally imposed time limit, or a shorter limit, differences that were not present under AFDC. There were significant increases in infant mortality when time limits became binding in a state. These increases occurred primarily among mothers who could have plausibly timed-out of TANF: poorly educated and unmarried women with at least one previous live-birth. There is some evidence that the population of mothers affected by time limits were less likely to seek prenatal care in the first trimester, suggesting a possible role for reduced medical care in explaining the deterioration in infant health.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Health Economics.

Volume (Year): 27 (2008)
Issue (Month): 6 (December)
Pages: 1551-1566

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Handle: RePEc:eee:jhecon:v:27:y:2008:i:6:p:1551-1566

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505560

Related research

Keywords: Welfare reform Infant mortality Time limits;

References

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  1. Jeffrey Grogger, 2002. "The Behavioral Effects of Welfare Time Limits," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(2), pages 385-389, May.
  2. Anna Aizer, 2006. "Public Health Insurance, Program Take-Up, and Child Health," NBER Working Papers 12105, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Currie, Janet & Gruber, Jonathan, 1996. "Saving Babies: The Efficacy and Cost of Recent Changes in the Medicaid Eligibility of Pregnant Women," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(6), pages 1263-96, December.
  4. Jeffrey Grogger & Charles Michalopoulos, 2003. "Welfare Dynamics under Time Limits," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(3), pages 530-554, June.
  5. Robert A. Moffitt, 2003. "The Temporary Assistance for Needy Families Program," NBER Chapters, in: Means-Tested Transfer Programs in the United States, pages 291-364 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Price V. Fishback & Michael R. Haines & Shawn Kantor, 2005. "Births, Deaths, and New Deal Relief during the Great Depression," NBER Working Papers 11246, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Marianne P. Bitler & Jonah B. Gelbach & Hilary W. Hoynes, 2005. "Welfare Reform and Health," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 40(2).
  8. Bitler, Marianne P. & Gelbach, Jonah B. & Hoynes, Hilary W., 2005. "What Mean Impacts Miss: Distributional Effects of Welfare Reform Experiments," IZA Discussion Papers 1728, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  9. Rebecca M. Blank, 2002. "Evaluating Welfare Reform in the United States," NBER Working Papers 8983, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Marianne Bertrand & Erzo F. P. Luttmer & Sendhil Mullainathan, 2000. "Network Effects And Welfare Cultures," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 115(3), pages 1019-1055, August.
  11. Abraído-Lanza, Ana F. & Chao, Maria T. & Flórez, Karen R., 2005. "Do healthy behaviors decline with greater acculturation?: Implications for the Latino mortality paradox," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 61(6), pages 1243-1255, September.
  12. Barbara H. Kehrer & Charles M. Wolin, 1979. "Impact of Income Maintenance on Low Birth Weight: Evidence from the Gary Experiment," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 14(4), pages 434-462.
  13. Hanming Fang & Michael P. Keane, 2004. "Assessing the Impact of Welfare Reform on Single Mothers," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 35(1), pages 1-116.
  14. Jonathan Gruber & Phillip Levine & Douglas Staiger, 1997. "Abortion Legalization and Child Living Circumstances: Who is the "Marginal Child?"," NBER Working Papers 6034, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Barbara Devaney & Linda Bilheimer & Jennifer Schore, 1992. "Medicaid costs and birth outcomes: The effects of prenatal WIC participation and the use of prenatal care," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(4), pages 573-592.
  16. Robert Kaestner & Won Chan Lee, 2003. "The Effect of Welfare Reform on Prenatal Care and Birth Weight," NBER Working Papers 9769, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Francesca Mazzolari, 2007. "Welfare Use when Approaching the Time Limit," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 42(3).
  18. Kenneth Y. Chay & Michael Greenstone, 2003. "The Impact Of Air Pollution On Infant Mortality: Evidence From Geographic Variation In Pollution Shocks Induced By A Recession," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 118(3), pages 1121-1167, August.
  19. Elizabeth Oltmans Ananat & Jonathan Gruber & Phillip B. Levine & Douglas Staiger, 2009. "Abortion and Selection," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 91(1), pages 124-136, February.
  20. Anna Aizer, 2003. "Low Take-Up in Medicaid: Does Outreach Matter and for Whom?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(2), pages 238-241, May.
  21. Robert Moffitt, 2003. "The Role of Non-Financial Factors in Exit and Entry in the TANF Program," Economics Working Paper Archive 496, The Johns Hopkins University,Department of Economics.
  22. Aizer, Anna & Currie, Janet, 2004. "Networks or neighborhoods? Correlations in the use of publicly-funded maternity care in California," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(12), pages 2573-2585, December.
  23. Jacob Alex Klerman & Caroline Danielson, 2004. "Why Did the Welfare Caseload Decline?," Working Papers 167, RAND Corporation Publications Department.
  24. Michael Brien & Christopher Swann, 2001. "Does Participation in Multiple Welfare Programs Improve Birth Outcomes?," JCPR Working Papers 212, Northwestern University/University of Chicago Joint Center for Poverty Research.
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Cited by:
  1. Ayala, Luis & Rodríguez, Magdalena, 2013. "Health-related effects of welfare-to-work policies," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 93(C), pages 103-112.

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