The Federal Effort to Desegregate Southern Hospitals and the Black-White Infant Mortality Gap

84 Pages Posted: 7 Dec 2020

See all articles by D. Mark Anderson

D. Mark Anderson

Montana State University - Bozeman - Department of Agricultural Economics and Economics

Kerwin Kofi Charles

University of Chicago - Harris School of Public Policy

Daniel I. Rees

University of Colorado Denver; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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Abstract

In 1966, Southern hospitals were barred from participating in Medicare unless they discontinued their long-standing practice of racial segregation. Using data from five Deep South states and exploiting county-level variation in Medicare certification dates, we find that gaining access to an ostensibly integrated hospital had no effect on the Black-White infant mortality gap, although it may have discouraged small numbers of Black mothers from giving birth at home attended by a midwife. These results are consistent with descriptions of the federal hospital desegregation campaign as producing only cosmetic changes and illustrate the limits of anti-discrimination policies imposed upon reluctant actors.

JEL Classification: I14, I18, N32

Suggested Citation

Anderson, D. Mark and Charles, Kerwin Kofi and Rees, Daniel I., The Federal Effort to Desegregate Southern Hospitals and the Black-White Infant Mortality Gap. IZA Discussion Paper No. 13920, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3743144

D. Mark Anderson (Contact Author)

Montana State University - Bozeman - Department of Agricultural Economics and Economics ( email )

Bozeman, MT 59717-2920
United States

Kerwin Kofi Charles

University of Chicago - Harris School of Public Policy ( email )

1155 East 60th Street
Chicago, IL 60637
United States
(773) 834-8922 (Phone)

Daniel I. Rees

University of Colorado Denver ( email )

Campus Box 181
P.O. Box 173364
Denver, CO 80218
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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