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Out of Sight, Out of Mind? Natural Disasters and Pregnancy Outcomes in the USA

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  • Emilia Simeonova

Abstract

This article studies the effect of natural disasters on pregnancy outcomes using historical data from the USA. Preterm infants are more likely to be of low birth weight and face increased risk of health problems later in life, implying large long run societal costs. While some of the causes of low birth weight are known, the exact mechanisms leading to prematurity are not well understood. Results confirm that maternal exposure to plausibly exogenous weather events decreases gestational age and birth weight. The negative effects of exposure are particularly strong in the second and early third trimesters of pregnancy, which coincides with the period identified by medical studies as most susceptible to external negative influences. (JEL codes: I10, I12, Q51) Copyright The Author 2011. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Ifo Institute for Economic Research, Munich. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com, Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Emilia Simeonova, 2011. "Out of Sight, Out of Mind? Natural Disasters and Pregnancy Outcomes in the USA," CESifo Economic Studies, CESifo, vol. 57(3), pages 403-431, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:cesifo:v:57:y:2011:i:3:p:403-431
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1093/cesifo/ifr005
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    Cited by:

    1. Kim, Bongkyun & Carruthers, Celeste K. & Harris, Matthew C., 2017. "Maternal stress and birth outcomes: Evidence from the 1994 Northridge earthquake," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 140(C), pages 354-373.
    2. Sandra Black & Paul J. Devereux & Kjell Salvanes, 2014. "Does grief transfer across generations? In-utero deaths and child outcomes," NBER Working Papers 19979, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Molina, Oswaldo & Saldarriaga, Victor, 2017. "The perils of climate change: In utero exposure to temperature variability and birth outcomes in the Andean region," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 24(C), pages 111-124.
    4. Carlson, Kyle, 2015. "Fear itself: The effects of distressing economic news on birth outcomes," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 117-132.
    5. Petra Persson & Maya Rossin-Slater, 2016. "Family Ruptures, Stress, and the Mental Health of the Next Generation," NBER Working Papers 22229, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Andalón, Mabel & Azevedo, João Pedro & Rodríguez-Castelán, Carlos & Sanfelice, Viviane & Valderrama-González, Daniel, 2016. "Weather Shocks and Health at Birth in Colombia," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 82(C), pages 69-82.
    7. Carlson, Kyle, 2014. "Fear itself: The effects of distressing economic news on birth outcomes," MPRA Paper 56560, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Hope Corman & Dhaval M. Dave & Nancy E. Reichman, 2017. "Evolution of the Infant Health Production Function," NBER Working Papers 24131, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Lee, Chulhee, 2014. "Intergenerational health consequences of in utero exposure to maternal stress: Evidence from the 1980 Kwangju uprising," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 119(C), pages 284-291.
    10. repec:eee:poleco:v:51:y:2018:i:c:p:93-106 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General
    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior
    • Q51 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Valuation of Environmental Effects

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