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The Effect of Paid Family Leave on Infant and Parental Health in the United States

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  • Bullinger, Lindsey Rose

Abstract

California’s paid family leave (PFL) policy improved mothers’ labor market outcomes, however, the health impacts of this program are less studied. I compare child and parental health of likely eligible households to a series of control groups before and after California’s PFL program was implemented. I find improvements in parent-reported overall child health and suggestive improvements in maternal mental health status. Findings also suggest a reduction in asthma and a greater likelihood that parents feel they are coping well with the day-to-day demands of parenting. There are no significant effects on respiratory or food allergies, or father’s mental health status. The results are robust to multiple control groups and placebo tests.

Suggested Citation

  • Bullinger, Lindsey Rose, 2019. "The Effect of Paid Family Leave on Infant and Parental Health in the United States," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(C), pages 101-116.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jhecon:v:66:y:2019:i:c:p:101-116
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jhealeco.2019.05.006
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    Cited by:

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    3. Bailey, Martha & Byker, Tanya & Patel, Elena & Ramnath, Shanthi, 2019. "The Long-Term Effects of California's 2004 Paid Family Leave Act on Women's Careers: Evidence from U.S. Tax Data," CEPR Discussion Papers 14217, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    4. Lee, Bethany C. & Modrek, Sepideh & White, Justin S. & Batra, Akansha & Collin, Daniel F. & Hamad, Rita, 2020. "The effect of California's paid family leave policy on parent health: A quasi-experimental study," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 251(C).
    5. Sarah H. Bana & Kelly Bedard & Maya Rossin‐Slater, 2020. "The Impacts of Paid Family Leave Benefits: Regression Kink Evidence from California Administrative Data," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 39(4), pages 888-929, September.
    6. Fabel, Marc, 2021. "Maternity leave and children's health outcomes in the long-term," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(C).
    7. Doran, Elizabeth L. & Bartel, Ann P. & Ruhm, Christopher J. & Waldfogel, Jane, 2020. "California's paid family leave law improves maternal psychological health," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 256(C).
    8. Marcus, Jan & Reif, Simon & Wuppermann, Amelie & Rouche, Amélie, 2020. "Increased instruction time and stress-related health problems among school children," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(C).
    9. Persson, Petra & Rossin-Slater, Maya, 2019. "When Dad Can Stay Home: Fathers' Workplace Flexibility and Maternal Health," CEPR Discussion Papers 13780, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    10. LEBIHAN, Laetitia & MAO TAKONGMO, Charles Olivier, 2019. "The Effect of Paid Parental Leave on Breastfeeding, Parental Health and Behavior," MPRA Paper 95719, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    11. Otto Lenhart, 2021. "The effects of paid family leave on food insecurity—evidence from California," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 19(3), pages 615-639, September.
    12. Anam Bilgrami & Kompal Sinha & Henry Cutler, 2020. "The impact of introducing a national scheme for paid parental leave on maternal mental health outcomes," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 29(12), pages 1657-1681, December.
    13. Li, Qi & Knoester, Chris & Petts, Richard, 2021. "Attitudes about Paid Parental Leave In the U.S," SocArXiv hd4ct, Center for Open Science.
    14. Katharina Heisig & Larissa Zierow, 2020. "Elternzeitverlängerung in der DDR: Langfristig höhere Lebenszufriedenheit der Kinder," ifo Dresden berichtet, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 27(02), pages 07-09, April.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    paid family leave; child health; parental mental health;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health
    • J88 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Standards - - - Public Policy
    • I14 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health and Inequality

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