Recessions and Admissions to Substance Abuse Treatment

43 Pages Posted: 8 Jun 2013

See all articles by Johanna Catherine Maclean

Johanna Catherine Maclean

University of Pennsylvania

Jonathan Harris Cantor

New York University (NYU) - Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service

Rosalie Liccardo Pacula

Health Economics, Finance and Organization, RAND Corporation; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Date Written: June 2013

Abstract

Previous economic research shows that recessions lead to worsening substance abuse. In this paper we study the effect of recessions on admissions to specialty substance abuse treatment using administrative data between 1992 and 2015. Using data from Treatment Episode Data Set and a differences-in-differences empirical strategy, we find no evidence that recessions influence the overall number of admissions. However, we document substantial heterogeneity across drugs of abuse. Combining our findings with previous economic studies suggests that unmet need for substance abuse treatment increases during recessions.

Suggested Citation

Maclean, Johanna Catherine and Cantor, Jonathan Harris and Pacula, Rosalie Liccardo, Recessions and Admissions to Substance Abuse Treatment (June 2013). NBER Working Paper No. w19115. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2276377

Johanna Catherine Maclean (Contact Author)

University of Pennsylvania ( email )

Jonathan Harris Cantor

New York University (NYU) - Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service ( email )

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Rosalie Liccardo Pacula

Health Economics, Finance and Organization, RAND Corporation ( email )

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