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Are Mental Health Insurance Mandates Effective? Evidence from Suicides

35 Pages Posted: 28 Sep 2003  

Jonathan Klick

University of Pennsylvania Law School; Erasmus School of Law; PERC - Property and Environment Research Center

Sara Markowitz

Emory University; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Date Written: September 2003

Abstract

Many states have passed laws mandating insurance companies to provide or offer some form of mental health benefits. These laws presumably lower the price of obtaining mental health services for many adults, and as a result, might improve health outcomes. This paper analyzes the effectiveness of mental health insurance mandates by examining the influence of mandates on adult suicides, which are strongly correlated with mental illness. Data on completed suicides in each state for the period 1981-2000 are analyzed. Ordinary least squares and two-stage least squares results show that mental health mandates are not effective in reducing suicide rates.

Suggested Citation

Klick, Jonathan and Markowitz, Sara, Are Mental Health Insurance Mandates Effective? Evidence from Suicides (September 2003). NBER Working Paper No. w9994. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=450895

Jonathan Klick

University of Pennsylvania Law School ( email )

3501 Sansom Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104
United States
2157463455 (Phone)

Erasmus School of Law ( email )

3000 DR Rotterdam
Netherlands

PERC - Property and Environment Research Center

2048 Analysis Drive
Suite A
Bozeman, MT 59718
United States

Sara Markowitz (Contact Author)

Emory University ( email )

201 Dowman Drive
Atlanta, GA 30322
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

365 Fifth Avenue, 5th Floor
New York, NY 10016-4309
United States
(212) 817-7968 (Phone)

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