Reducing Binge Drinking? The Effect of a Ban on Late-Night Off-Premise Alcohol Sales on Alcohol-Related Hospital Stays in Germany
61 Pages Posted: 24 Jan 2015
Excessive alcohol consumption among young people is a major public health concern. On March 1, 2010, the German state of Baden-Württemberg banned the sale of alcoholic beverages between 10pm and 5am at off-premise outlets (e.g., gas stations, kiosks, supermarkets). We use rich monthly administrative data from a 70 percent random sample of all hospitalizations during the years 2007-2011 in Germany in order to evaluate the short-term impact of this policy on alcohol-related hospitalizations. Applying difference-in-differences methods, we find that the policy change reduces alcohol-related hospitalizations among adolescents and young adults by about seven percent. There is also evidence of a decrease in the number of hospitalizations due to violent assault as a result of the ban.
Keywords: binge drinking, drinking hours, alcohol control policies, difference-in-differences, hospital diagnosis statistics, alcohol
JEL Classification: I12, I18, D04
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