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Child Mental Health and Human Capital Accumulation: The Case of ADHD

Janet Currie () and Mark Stabile

No 10435, NBER Working Papers from National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc

Abstract: One in five U.S. youngsters has a mental disorder, but we know little about the effects of these disorders on outcomes. We examine U.S. and Canadian children with symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), the most common child mental health problem. Our innovations include the use of large nationally representative samples of children, the use of questions administered to all children rather than focusing only on diagnosed cases, and the use of sibling fixed effects to control for omitted variables. We find large negative effects on test scores and schooling attainment suggesting that mental health conditions are a more important determinant of average outcomes than physical health conditions.

JEL-codes: I2 I1 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-hea
Date: 2004-04
Note: ED HE CH
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Published as Currie, Janet & Stabile, Mark, 2006. "Child mental health and human capital accumulation: The case of ADHD," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(6), pages 1094-1118, November.

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