The Phenomenon of Summer Diarrhea and its Waning, 1910-1930
D. Mark Anderson,
Daniel Rees () and
No 25689, NBER Working Papers from National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc
During the first two decades of the 20th century, diarrheal deaths among American infants and children surged every summer. Although we still do not know what pathogen (or pathogens) caused this phenomenon, the consensus view is that it was eventually controlled through public health efforts at the municipal level. Using data from 26 major American cities for the period 1910-1930, we document the phenomenon of summer diarrhea and explore its dissipation. We find that water filtration is associated with a 15-17 percent reduction in diarrheal mortality among children under the age of two during the non-summer months, but does not seem to have had an effect on diarrheal mortality during the summer. In general, we find little evidence to suggest that public health interventions undertaken at the municipal level contributed to the dissipation of summer diarrhea. Our results are relevant for many parts of the developing world today, where climate change is expected to affect the length and intensity of seasons as well as the incidence of diarrheal diseases.
JEL-codes: I10 I18 N3 Q54 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-hea and nep-his
Note: CH DAE DEV EEE HE
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (4) Track citations by RSS feed
Published as D. Mark Anderson & Daniel I. Rees & Tianyi Wang, 2020. "The Phenomenon of Summer Diarrhea and its Waning, 1910-1930," Explorations in Economic History, .
Downloads: (external link)
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.
Export reference: BibTeX
RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan)
Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:nbr:nberwo:25689
Ordering information: This working paper can be ordered from
Access Statistics for this paper
More papers in NBER Working Papers from National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.. Contact information at EDIRC.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by ().