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Local Exposure to School Shootings and Youth Antidepressant Use

Author

Listed:
  • Maya Rossin-Slater
  • Molly Schnell
  • Hannes Schwandt
  • Sam Trejo
  • Lindsey Uniat

Abstract

While over 240,000 American students experienced a school shooting in the last two decades, little is known about the impacts of these events on the mental health of surviving youth. Using large-scale prescription data from 2006 to 2015, we examine the effects of 44 school shootings on youth antidepressant use in a difference-in-difference framework. We find that local exposure to fatal school shootings increases youth antidepressant use by 21.4 percent in the following two years. These effects are smaller in areas with a higher density of mental health providers who focus on behavioral, rather than pharmacological, interventions.

Suggested Citation

  • Maya Rossin-Slater & Molly Schnell & Hannes Schwandt & Sam Trejo & Lindsey Uniat, 2019. "Local Exposure to School Shootings and Youth Antidepressant Use," NBER Working Papers 26563, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:26563
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health
    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth

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