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Are mental health insurance mandates effective? Evidence from suicides

  • Jonathan Klick

    (Florida State University College of Law, USA)

  • Sara Markowitz

    (Rutgers University, Newark and National Bureau of Economic Research, USA)

Many states in the US have passed laws mandating insurance companies to provide or offer some form of mental health benefits. These laws presumably lower the price of obtaining mental health services for many adults, and as a result, might improve health outcomes. This paper analyzes the effectiveness of mental health insurance mandates by examining the influence of mandates on adult suicides, which are strongly correlated with mental illness. Data on completed suicides in each state for the period 1981-2000 are analyzed. Ordinary least squares and two-stage least squares results show that mental health mandates are not effective in reducing suicide rates. Copyright © 2005 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1002/hec.1023
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Article provided by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. in its journal Health Economics.

Volume (Year): 15 (2006)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 83-97

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Handle: RePEc:wly:hlthec:v:15:y:2006:i:1:p:83-97
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/cgi-bin/jhome/5749

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  1. Jonathan Gruber, 1992. "State Mandated Benefits and Employer Provided Health Insurance," NBER Working Papers 4239, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Frank, Richard G. & McGuire, Thomas G., 2000. "Economics and mental health," Handbook of Health Economics, in: A. J. Culyer & J. P. Newhouse (ed.), Handbook of Health Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 16, pages 893-954 Elsevier.
  3. Joshua Angrist & Alan Krueger, 2001. "Instrumental Variables and the Search for Identification: From Supply and Demand to Natural Experiments," Working Papers 834, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  4. Gruber, Jonathan, 1994. "State-mandated benefits and employer-provided health insurance," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(3), pages 433-464, November.
  5. Robert Kaestner & Kosali Ilayperuma Simon, 2002. "Labor market consequences of state health insurance regulation," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 56(1), pages 136-159, October.
  6. Michael Grossman, 1972. "The Demand for Health: A Theoretical and Empirical Investigation," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number gros72-1, December.
  7. Craig William Perry & Harvey S. Rosen, 2001. "The Self-Employed are Less Likely to Have Health Insurance Than Wage Earners. So What?," NBER Working Papers 8316, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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