Health Insurance Mandates, Mammography, and Breast Cancer Diagnoses

Marianne P. Bitler, Christopher S. Carpenter

NBER Working Paper No. 16669
Issued in January 2011, Revised in December 2014
NBER Program(s):Health Care, Health Economics

We examine the effects of state health insurance mandates requiring coverage of screening mammograms. We find robust evidence that mammography mandates significantly increased mammography screenings by 4.5-25 percent. Effects are larger for women with less than a high school degree in states that ban deductibles, a policy similar to a provision of federal health reform that eliminates cost-sharing for preventive care. We also find that mandates increased detection of early stage in-situ pre-cancers. Finally, we find a substantial proportion of the increased screenings were attributable to mandates that are not consistent with current recommendations of the American Cancer Society.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w16669

Published: Marianne P. Bitler & Christopher S. Carpenter, 2016. "Health Insurance Mandates, Mammography, and Breast Cancer Diagnoses," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 8(3), pages 39-68, August. citation courtesy of

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