The War on Drugs: Estimating the Effect of Prescription Drug Supply-Side Interventions

78 Pages Posted: 7 Mar 2016 Last revised: 8 Sep 2016

See all articles by Angelica Meinhofer

Angelica Meinhofer

Brown University - Department of Economics

Date Written: September 7, 2016

Abstract

This paper estimates the effect of supply-side interventions on prescription drug availability, abuse, and crime. I employ novel data and exploit the timing and geographic location of a crackdown on legal suppliers of pharmaceuticals in Florida, the epicenter of America's prescription drug abuse epidemic during the 2000s. Between 2010-12, nearly 600 pain clinics were shutdown. In turn, average oxycodone quantities decreased 59%, oxycodone street prices increased 238%, opioid abuse treatment admissions increased 33%, and approximately 2,000 oxycodone-related deaths were averted. Spillovers from substitution to illegal drugs were modest, with approximately 139 new heroin-related deaths and no increase in crime.

Suggested Citation

Meinhofer, Angelica, The War on Drugs: Estimating the Effect of Prescription Drug Supply-Side Interventions (September 7, 2016). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2716974 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2716974

Angelica Meinhofer (Contact Author)

Brown University - Department of Economics ( email )

64 Waterman Street
Providence, RI 02912
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.brown.edu/academics/economics/candidates/angelica-meinhofer

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