46 research outputs found

    The Impact of State Physical Education Requirements on Youth Physical Activity and Overweight

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    To combat childhood overweight, which has risen dramatically in the past three decades, many medical and public health organizations have called for students to spend more time in physical education (PE) classes. This paper is the first to exploit state PE requirements as quasi-natural experiments in order to estimate the causal impact of PE on student activity and weight. We study nationwide data from the YRBSS for 1999, 2001, and 2003 merged with data on state minimum PE requirements from the 1994 and 2000 School Health Policies and Programs Study and the 2001 Shape of the Nation Report. We find that certain state regulations are effective in raising the number of minutes during which students are active in PE. Our results also indicate that additional PE time raises the number of days per week that students report having exercised or engaged in strength-building activities, but lowers the number of days in which students report light physical activity. PE time has no detectable impact on youth BMI or the probability that a student is overweight. We conclude that while raising PE requirements may make students more active by some (but not all) measures, there is not yet the scientific base to declare raising PE requirements an anti-obesity initiative.

    For those states that expand it, Medicaid may be a gateway to enrollment in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program for those in poor health

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    The federal government’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) provides more than 45 million Americans on low incomes with assistance to purchase food. Poor access to food – and low quality food – is often a key contributor to poor health outcomes, meaning that policymakers are keen to increase the number of SNAP enrollments by the chronically ill. In new research, Chad D. Meyerhoefer and Yuriy Pylypchuk look at the link between health, and whether or not those with low incomes enroll in SNAP and Medicaid. They find that individuals with diet-sensitive and other chronic conditions are more likely to enroll in SNAP if they are already enrolled in Medicaid. They argue that coordinating measures aimed at improving access to health care, such as the Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act with programs like SNAP, would help low-income individuals better manage the burdens of chronic disease


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    In this paper we derive a joint continuous/censored demand system suitable for the analysis of commodity demand relationships using panel data. Unobserved heterogeneity is controlled for using a correlated random effects specification and a Generalized Method of Moments framework used to estimate the model in two stages. While relatively small differences in elasticity estimates are found between a flexible specification and one that restricts the relationship between the random effect and budget shares to be time invariant, larger differences are observed between the most flexible random effects model and a pooled cross sectional estimator. The results suggest the limited ability of such estimators to control for preference heterogeneity and unit value endogeneity leads to parameter bias.Research Methods/ Statistical Methods,

    How Do Health and Social Insurance Programs Affect the Land and Labor Allocations of Farm Households? Evidence from Taiwan

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    Using a unique dataset of 703,287 farm operators from the Taiwanese Census of Agriculture merged to administrative records from the National Farmers' Health Insurance (FHI) program, we examine the effects of the enrollment in the FHI program on farmers’ on- and off-farm labor supply and the amount of land they allocate to Taiwan’s land retirement program. In order to account for non-random self-selection into the FHI we use a matching procedure to estimate the impact of the program on land and labor allocations. Our results indicate that participation in the FHI increases (decrease) on (off) farm labor supply, and decreases the amount of land enrolled in the land retirement program. Our findings have implication for health care reforms that have been initiated in other countries, and the United States in particular.National Farmer's Health Insurance Program, labor supply, land retirement program, Taiwan., Agricultural and Food Policy, Health Economics and Policy, Labor and Human Capital,

    The Effect of Medicare Eligibility on Spousal Insurance Coverage

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    A majority of married couples in the United States take advantage of the fact that employers often provide health insurance coverage to spouses. When the older spouses become eligible for Medicare, however, many of them can no longer provide their younger spouses with coverage. In this paper, we study how spousal eligibility for Medicare affects the health insurance and health care access of the younger spouse. We find spousal eligibility for Medicare results in the younger spouse having worse insurance coverage and reduced access to health care services

    The Effect of Chronic Illness on Participation in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance and Medicaid Programs

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    We examine enrollment in the U.S. Medicaid and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Programs (SNAP) by health status and find that while SNAP-eligible adults in poor overall health and with multiple chronic conditions are more likely to jointly enroll in SNAP and Medicaid, they are less likely to enroll in SNAP alone. We also find that the conditional probability of SNAP enrollment given Medicaid participation is higher for individuals with multiple chronic conditions, indicating that the Medicaid program facilitates food assistance receipt for these individuals. As a result, both Medicaid expansions and state and federal policies that harmonize eligibility criteria or promote enrollment coordination between SNAP and Medicaid are expected to increase the number of individuals in SNAP with chronic medical conditions. Such a change in the composition of SNAP enrollees would increase the justification for using SNAP as a platform for health promotion initiatives