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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. 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.
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  6. Robert Moffitt, 2002. "The Temporary Assistance for Needy Families Program," NBER Working Papers 8749, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. 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.
  8. Jeff Grogger & Charles Michalopoulos, 1999. "Welfare Dynamics Under Time Limits," NBER Working Papers 7353, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Francesca Mazzolari, 2007. "Welfare Use when Approaching the Time Limit," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 42(3).
  10. Marianne P. Bitler & Jonah B. Gelbach & Hilary W. Hoynes, 2004. "Welfare Reform and Health," Working Papers 102-1, RAND Corporation Publications Department.
  11. 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.
  12. Jacob Alex Klerman & Caroline Danielson, 2004. "Why Did the Welfare Caseload Decline?," Working Papers 167, RAND Corporation Publications Department.
  13. Rebecca M. Blank, 2002. "Evaluating Welfare Reform in the United States," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 40(4), pages 1105-1166, December.
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  15. 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.
  16. 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).
  17. 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.
  18. Jeffrey Grogger, 2002. "The Behavioral Effects of Welfare Time Limits," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(2), pages 385-389, May.
  19. Anna Aizer & Janet Currie, 2002. "Networks or Neighborhoods? Correlations in the Use of Publicly-Funded Maternity Care in California," NBER Working Papers 9209, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. 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.
  21. 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.
  22. 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.
  23. Anna Aizer, 2007. "Public Health Insurance, Program Take-Up, and Child Health," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 89(3), pages 400-415, August.
  24. 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.
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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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