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

Charles Courtemanche (), James Marton (), Benjamin Ukert (), Aaron Yelowitz () and Daniela Zapata ()
Additional contact information
Benjamin Ukert: University of Pennsylvania
Daniela Zapata: Impaq International

No 11468, IZA Discussion Papers from Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

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.

Keywords: Affordable Care Act; health insurance; Medicaid; health behavior; obesity; smoking; drinking; preventive care; screening (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I12 I13 I18 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-hea and nep-ias
Date: 2018-04
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