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Effects of the Affordable Care Act on Health Behaviors after Three Years

Author

Listed:
  • Courtemanche, Charles

    () (Georgia State University)

  • Marton, James

    () (Georgia State University)

  • Ukert, Benjamin

    () (University of Pennsylvania)

  • Yelowitz, Aaron

    () (University of Kentucky)

  • Zapata, Daniela

    () (Impaq International)

Abstract

This paper examines the impacts of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) – which substantially increased insurance coverage through regulations, mandates, subsidies, and Medicaid expansions – on behaviors related to future health risks after three years. Using data from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System and an identification strategy that leverages variation in pre-ACA uninsured rates and state Medicaid expansion decisions, we show that the ACA increased preventive care utilization along several dimensions, but also increased risky drinking. These results are driven by the private portions of the law, as opposed to the Medicaid expansion. We also conduct subsample analyses by income and age.

Suggested Citation

  • Courtemanche, Charles & Marton, James & Ukert, Benjamin & Yelowitz, Aaron & Zapata, Daniela, 2018. "Effects of the Affordable Care Act on Health Behaviors after Three Years," IZA Discussion Papers 11468, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp11468
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. repec:wly:jpamgt:v:36:y:2017:i:3:p:608-642 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Janet Currie & Jonathan Gruber, 1996. "Health Insurance Eligibility, Utilization of Medical Care, and Child Health," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 111(2), pages 431-466.
    3. Barbaresco, Silvia & Courtemanche, Charles J. & Qi, Yanling, 2015. "Impacts of the Affordable Care Act dependent coverage provision on health-related outcomes of young adults," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(C), pages 54-68.
    4. Charles Courtemanche & James Marton & Aaron Yelowitz, 2016. "Who Gained Insurance Coverage in 2014, the First Year of Full ACA Implementation?," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 25(6), pages 778-784, June.
    5. Charles Courtemanche & James Marton & Benjamin Ukert & Aaron Yelowitz & Daniela Zapata, 2018. "Early Effects of the Affordable Care Act on Health Care Access, Risky Health Behaviors, and Self‐Assessed Health," Southern Economic Journal, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 84(3), pages 660-691, January.
    6. Kolstad, Jonathan T. & Kowalski, Amanda E., 2012. "The impact of health care reform on hospital and preventive care: Evidence from Massachusetts," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(11), pages 909-929.
    7. Charles J. Courtemanche & Daniela Zapata, 2014. "Does Universal Coverage Improve Health? The Massachusetts Experience," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 33(1), pages 36-69, January.
    8. David Card & Carlos Dobkin & Nicole Maestas, 2008. "The Impact of Nearly Universal Insurance Coverage on Health Care Utilization: Evidence from Medicare," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(5), pages 2242-2258, December.
    9. Amanda Kowalski, 2014. "The Early Impact of the Affordable Care Act, State by State," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 45(2 (Fall)), pages 277-355.
    10. Courtemanche, Charles & Pinkston, Joshua C. & Stewart, Jay, 2015. "Adjusting body mass for measurement error with invalid validation data," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 19(C), pages 275-293.
    11. Miller, Sarah, 2012. "The effect of insurance on emergency room visits: An analysis of the 2006 Massachusetts health reform," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(11), pages 893-908.
    12. repec:wly:jpamgt:v:36:y:2017:i:2:p:390-417 is not listed on IDEAS
    13. Dhaval Dave & Robert Kaestner, 2009. "Health insurance and ex ante moral hazard: evidence from Medicare," International Journal of Health Economics and Management, Springer, vol. 9(4), pages 367-390, December.
    14. Dhaval M. Dave & Robert Kaestner & George L. Wehby, 2015. "Does Medicaid Coverage for Pregnant Women Affect Prenatal Health Behaviors?," NBER Working Papers 21049, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    15. Robert Kaestner & Bowen Garrett & Jiajia Chen & Anuj Gangopadhyaya & Caitlyn Fleming, 2017. "Effects of ACA Medicaid Expansions on Health Insurance Coverage and Labor Supply," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 36(3), pages 608-642, June.
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    17. repec:wly:jpamgt:v:36:y:2017:i:1:p:178-210 is not listed on IDEAS
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Affordable Care Act; health insurance; Medicaid; health behavior; obesity; smoking; drinking; preventive care; screening;

    JEL classification:

    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior
    • I13 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Insurance, Public and Private
    • I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health

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