Multiple Births, Birth Quality and Maternal Labor Supply: Analysis of Ivf Reform in Sweden

66 Pages Posted: 12 Aug 2019

See all articles by Sonia R. Bhalotra

Sonia R. Bhalotra

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Damian Clarke

University of Oxford - Department of Economics

Hanna Mühlrad

Karolinska Institutet; Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IFN)

Marten Palme

Stockholm University - Department of Economics; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Abstract

In this study we examine the passage of a reform to in-vitro fertilization (IVF) procedures in Sweden in 2003. Following publication of medical evidence showing that pregnancy success rates could be maintained using single rather than multiple embryo transfers, the single embryo transfer (SET) was mandated as the default IVF procedure. Using linked registry data for the period 1998-2007, we find that the SET reform was associated with a precipitous drop in the share of multiple births of 63%.This narrowed differences in health between IVF and non- IVF births by 53%, and differences in the labor market outcomes of mothers three years after birth by 85%. For first time mothers it also narrowed the gap in maternal health between IVF and non-IVF births by 36%. Our findings imply that more widespread adoption of SET could lead to massive gains, reducing hospitalization costs and the foregone income of mothers and improving the long-run socioeconomic outcomes of children. This is important given that the share of IVF facilitated births exceeds 3% in several industrialized countries and is on the rise.

Keywords: IVF, fertility, maternal health, neonatal health, career penalty, human capital formation

JEL Classification: J13, I11, I12, I38, J24

Suggested Citation

Bhalotra, Sonia R. and Clarke, Damian and Mühlrad, Hanna and Palme, Marten, Multiple Births, Birth Quality and Maternal Labor Supply: Analysis of Ivf Reform in Sweden. IZA Discussion Paper No. 12490, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3435363

Sonia R. Bhalotra (Contact Author)

IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Damian Clarke

University of Oxford - Department of Economics ( email )

Manor Road Building
Manor Road
Oxford, OX1 3BJ
United Kingdom

Hanna Mühlrad

Karolinska Institutet ( email )

Granits väg 4
Solna, Stockholm 17171
Sweden

Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IFN) ( email )

Box 55665
Grevgatan 34, 2nd floor
Stockholm, SE-102 15
Sweden

Marten Palme

Stockholm University - Department of Economics ( email )

Universitetsvägen 10 A
House A, floor 4 and 7
Frescati, Stockholm
Sweden
+46163307 (Phone)

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

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