Impacts of the Affordable Care Act dependent coverage provision on health-related outcomes of young adults

Silvia Barbaresco, Charles J. Courtemanche, Yanling Qi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

160 Scopus citations

Abstract

The first major insurance expansion of the Affordable Care Act - a provision requiring insurers to allow dependents to remain on parents' health insurance until turning 26 - took effect in September 2010. We estimate this mandate's impacts on numerous outcomes related to health care access, preventive care utilization, risky behaviors, and self-assessed health. We estimate difference-in-differences models with 23-25 year olds as the treatment group and 27-29 year olds as the control group. For the full sample, the dependent coverage provision increased the probabilities of having health insurance, a primary care doctor, and excellent self-assessed health, while reducing body mass index. However, the mandate also increased risky drinking and did not lead to any significant increases in preventive care utilization. Subsample analyses reveal particularly large gains for men and college graduates.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)54-68
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Health Economics
Volume40
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2015

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 Elsevier B.V.

Keywords

  • Affordable care act
  • Dependent coverage
  • Health insurance
  • Preventive care
  • Risky behaviors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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