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Do mandated health insurance benefits for diabetes save lives?

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  • Son, Jinyeong

Abstract

In response to the growing concern over diabetes, state-mandated health insurance benefits for diabetes have become popular since the late 1990s. However, little is known about whether these mandates improve the health of people with diabetes. In this paper, I use data from the restricted-use Multiple Cause of Death Mortality database and the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System to investigate the effects of these mandates on diabetes-related mortality rates, along with the underlying mechanisms behind the estimated effects. Using a difference-in-differences framework that leverages variation in the enactment of mandates both across states and over time, I find that approximately 3.1 fewer diabetes-related deaths per 100,000 occur annually in mandate states than in non-mandate states. The mechanism analysis suggests higher utilization of the mandated medical benefits caused these mortality improvements. These findings can inform the ongoing policy debate on strengthening or weakening coverage mandates, including Essential Health Benefits under the Affordable Care Act.

Suggested Citation

  • Son, Jinyeong, 2022. "Do mandated health insurance benefits for diabetes save lives?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 216(C).
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:pubeco:v:216:y:2022:i:c:s0047272722001645
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jpubeco.2022.104762
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Mandated Benefits; Diabetes; Mortality;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I13 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Insurance, Public and Private
    • I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health
    • J11 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Demographic Trends, Macroeconomic Effects, and Forecasts
    • K32 - Law and Economics - - Other Substantive Areas of Law - - - Energy, Environmental, Health, and Safety Law

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