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The State Health Insurance Program and Job Mobility: Identifying Job Lock among Working Parents in Near-Poor Households

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  • Bansak, Cynthia
  • Raphael, Steven
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    Abstract

    We use the introduction of the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) to assess whether the job mobility and wages of near-poor parents are suppressed through job lock. We exploit differential take up rates among eligible households and stratify adults in these household in to quasi-experimental treatment and control groups. Using data from the 1996 and 2001 Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP), we first identify working adults whose children meet the SCHIP eligibility criteria. We then separate these workers into two groups: those with employed spouses who have employer provided coverage in their own names and those who do not. For the former group, the introduction of SCHIP is unlikely to relieve job lock since they already had a viable alternative source of coverage. For the latter group, however, SCHIP provides an alternative source of coverage where one previously did not exist. We find a large significant increase in public coverage rates among the children of adults who do not have independently insured spouses (on the order of 10 percentage points). There is no such increase among adults with insured spouses. Corresponding to these differential take up rates are differences in the change in job mobility. Among workers without insured spouses, we observe a 6 percent point increase in the likelihood that the worker separates from their current employer within one year after SCHIP is implemented. We see no comparable change in mobility among those with insured spouses. This relative pattern survives regression adjustment for observable demographic characteristics, the household’s position in the income distribution and a host of other controls. Finally, we find no effect of the increased mobility on relative wages.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Institute of Industrial Relations, UC Berkeley in its series Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, Working Paper Series with number qt87n5j524.

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    Date of creation: 01 May 2005
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    Handle: RePEc:cdl:indrel:qt87n5j524

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    1. Donna B. Gilleskie & Byron F. Lutz, 2002. "The Impact of Employer-Provided Health Insurance on Dynamic Employment Transitions," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 37(1), pages 129-162.
    2. Anthony T. LoSasso & Thomas C. Buchmueller, 2002. "The Effect of the State Children's Health Insurance Program on Health Insurance Coverage," NBER Working Papers 9405, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Kanika Kapur, 1998. "The Impact of health on job mobility: A measure of job lock," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 51(2), pages 282-298, January.
    4. Scott J. Adams, 2004. "Employer-provided Health Insurance and Job Change," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 22(3), pages 357-369, 07.
    5. Kevin T. Stroupe & Eleanor D. Kinney & Thomas J. Kniesner, 2000. "Chronic Illness and Health Insurance-Related Job Lock," Center for Policy Research Working Papers 19, Center for Policy Research, Maxwell School, Syracuse University.
    6. Gruber, Jonathan & Madrian, Brigitte C., 1997. "Employment separation and health insurance coverage," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(3), pages 349-382, December.
    7. Jonathan Gruber & Brigitte C. Madrian, 1994. "Health insurance and job mobility: The effects of public policy on job-lock," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 48(1), pages 86-102, October.
    8. Thomas C. Buchmueller & Robert G. Valletta, 1996. "The effects of employer-provided health insurance on worker mobility," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 49(3), pages 439-455, April.
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    Cited by:
    1. Brigitte Madrian, 2006. "The U.S. Health Care System and Labor Markets," NBER Working Papers 11980, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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