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Subsidized Contraception, Fertility, and Sexual Behavior

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Author Info

  • Melissa S. Kearney

    (Department of Economics, University of Maryland, and NBER)

  • Phillip B. Levine

    (Department of Economics, Wellesley College, and NBER)

Abstract

We examine the impact of recent state-level Medicaid policy changes that expanded eligibility for family planning services to higher-income women and to Medicaid clients whose benefits would expire otherwise. We show that the income-based policy change reduced overall births to non-teens by about 2% and to teens by over 4%; estimates suggest a decline of 9% among newly eligible women. The reduction in fertility appears to have been accomplished via greater use of contraception. Our calculations indicate that allowing higher-income women to receive federally funded family planning cost on the order of $6,800 for each averted birth. Copyright by the President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

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File URL: http://www.mitpressjournals.org/doi/pdf/10.1162/rest.91.1.137
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by MIT Press in its journal The Review of Economics and Statistics.

Volume (Year): 91 (2009)
Issue (Month): 1 (February)
Pages: 137-151

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Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:91:y:2009:i:1:p:137-151

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References

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  1. Melissa Schettini Kearney, 2004. "Is There an Effect of Incremental Welfare Benefits on Fertility Behavior?: A Look at the Family Cap," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 39(2).
  2. Jennifer M. Mellor, 1998. "The Effect of Family Planning Programs on the Fertility of Welfare Recipients: Evidence from Medicaid Claims," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 33(4), pages 866-895.
  3. Phillip B. Levine, 2001. "The Sexual Activity and Birth-Control Use of American Teenagers," NBER Chapters, in: Risky Behavior among Youths: An Economic Analysis, pages 167-218 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Timothy Besley & Anne Case, 1994. "Unnatural Experiments? Estimating the Incidence of Endogenous Policies," NBER Working Papers 4956, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Phillip B. Levine, 2002. "The Impact of Social Policy and Economic Activity Throughout the Fertility Decision Tree," NBER Working Papers 9021, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Paul Gertler & John Molyneaux, 1994. "How economic development and family planning programs combined to reduce indonesian fertility," Demography, Springer, vol. 31(1), pages 33-63, February.
  7. Martha J Bailey, 2006. "More Power to the Pill: The Impact of Contraceptive Freedom on Women's Life Cycle Labor Supply," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 121(1), pages 289-320, 02.
  8. Paton, David, 2002. "The economics of family planning and underage conceptions," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 207-225, March.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Tal Gross & Jeanne Lafortune & Corinne Low, 2014. "What Happens the Morning After? The Costs and Benefits of Expanding Access to Emergency Contraception," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 33(1), pages 70-93, 01.
  2. Grönqvist, Hans & Hall, Caroline, 2011. "Education policy and early fertility: lessons from an expansion of upper secondary schooling," Working Paper Series 2011:24, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
  3. Girma, Sourafel & Paton, David, 2011. "The impact of emergency birth control on teen pregnancy and STIs," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 373-380, March.
  4. Ilyana Kuziemko & Katherine Meckel & Maya Rossin-Slater, 2013. "Do Insurers Risk-Select Against Each Other? Evidence from Medicaid and Implications for Health Reform," NBER Working Papers 19198, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Colin Cannonier, . "State Abstinence Education Programs and Teen Fertility in the U.S," Departmental Working Papers 2009-14, Department of Economics, Louisiana State University.
  6. Colin Cannonier, 2012. "State abstinence education programs and teen birth rates in the US," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 10(1), pages 53-75, March.
  7. Sourafel Girma & David Paton, 2013. "Does Parental Consent for Birth Control Affect Underage Pregnancy Rates? The Case of Texas," Demography, Springer, vol. 50(6), pages 2105-2128, December.
  8. Thomas DeLeire & Leonard M. Lopoo & Kosali I. Simon, 2007. "Medicaid Expansions and Fertility in the United States," NBER Working Papers 12907, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Mariana Gerstenblüth & Zuleika Ferre & Máximo Rossi & Patricia Triunfo, 2009. "Impacto de la maternidad adolescente en los logros educativos," Documentos de Trabajo (working papers) 0509, Department of Economics - dECON.
  10. Melissa S. Kearney & Phillip B. Levine, 2007. "Socioeconomic Disadvantage and Early Childbearing," NBER Chapters, in: The Problems of Disadvantaged Youth: An Economic Perspective, pages 181-209 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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