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Prenatal Smoking Cessation and Infant Health: Evidence from Sibling Births

  • Ji Yan
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This paper uses a unique large panel data of sibling births to provide new evidence on when prenatal smokers must quit smoking to deliver the healthy newborn. In a series of the mother fixed effect estimation, I find robust results that early cessation in the first trimester nullifies the adverse smoking impact, but late cessation in the second trimester still leaves a remarkably irreversible damage on infant health. About two third of the adverse smoking impact on infant health occurs in the second trimester, mainly through fetal growth retardation. Therefore the first trimester is the critical period for prenatal smoking cessation. In particular, failing to stop smoking promptly in this period is crucial to explain why low socioeconomic status prenatal smokers transmit their poor health and economic status to the offspring. The policy implication is that reallocating resources on prenatal smoking cessation towards the first trimester can lead to a significant effciency gain. This paper also uncovers a new source of downward bias in estimating the causal relation between a group measure "prenatal smokers" and infant health, if the timing information of smoking cessation is misused. Key Words: Prenatal Smoking, Timing of Smoking Cessation, Birth Weight, Low Birth Weight

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File URL: http://econ.appstate.edu/RePEc/pdf/wp1118.pdf
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Paper provided by Department of Economics, Appalachian State University in its series Working Papers with number 11-18.

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Date of creation: 2011
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Handle: RePEc:apl:wpaper:11-18
Contact details of provider: Postal: Thelma C. Raley Hall, Boone, North Carolina 28608
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Web page: http://www.business.appstate.edu/departments/economics/

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  1. Janet Currie, 2009. "Healthy, Wealthy, and Wise: Socioeconomic Status, Poor Health in Childhood, and Human Capital Development," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 47(1), pages 87-122, March.
  2. Case, Anne & Fertig, Angela & Paxson, Christina, 2005. "The lasting impact of childhood health and circumstance," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 365-389, March.
  3. Diana S. Lien & William N. Evans, 2005. "Estimating the Impact of Large Cigarette Tax Hikes: The Case of Maternal Smoking and Infant Birth Weight," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 40(2).
  4. Adda, Jérôme & Cornaglia, Francesca, 2005. "Taxes, Cigarette Consumption and Smoking Intensity," IZA Discussion Papers 1849, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  5. Abrevaya, Jason & Dahl, Christian M, 2008. "The Effects of Birth Inputs on Birthweight," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 26, pages 379-397.
  6. Rosenzweig, Mark R & Wolpin, Kenneth I, 1995. "Sisters, Siblings, and Mothers: The Effect of Teen-Age Childbearing on Birth Outcomes in a Dynamic Family Context," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(2), pages 303-26, March.
  7. William N. Evans & Jeanne S. Ringel, 1997. "Can Higher Cigarette Taxes Improve Birth Outcomes?," NBER Working Papers 5998, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Tara Watson & Angela Fertig, 2008. "Minimum Drinking Age Laws and Infant Health Outcomes," NBER Working Papers 14118, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Kelly Noonan & Nancy E. Reichman & Hope Corman & Dhaval Dave, 2007. "Prenatal drug use and the production of infant health," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 16(4), pages 361-384.
  10. Nancy E. Reichman & Hope Corman & Kelly Noonan & Dhaval Dave, 2009. "Infant health production functions: what a difference the data make," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 18(7), pages 761-782.
  11. Rosenzweig, Mark R. & Wolpin, Kenneth I., 1991. "Inequality at birth : The scope for policy intervention," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 50(1-2), pages 205-228, October.
  12. Hope Corman & Theodore J. Joyce & Michael Grossman, 1987. "Birth Outcome Production Function in the United States," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 22(3), pages 339-360.
  13. Jason Abrevaya, 2006. "Estimating the effect of smoking on birth outcomes using a matched panel data approach," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 21(4), pages 489-519.
  14. E. Kathleen Adams & Vincent P. Miller & Carla Ernst & Brenda K. Nishimura & Cathy Melvin & Robert Merritt, 2002. "Neonatal health care costs related to smoking during pregnancy," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(3), pages 193-206.
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