The Impact of National Health Insurance on Birth Outcomes: A Natural Experiment in Taiwan
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This paper was presented at the ifo/CESifo and University of Munich Conference entitled “Empirical Health Economics” in Munich, Germany, March 19-20, 2010 and at a session entitled “Health Insurance and Health Outcomes” sponsored by the Health Economics Research Organization at the Allied Social Science Associations annual conference in Denver Colorado, January 6-9, 2011. Research for the paper was supported by Award Number 0422665 from the National Science Foundation to the National Bureau of Economic Research. The paper has had a long gestation period due to problems encountered in using Taiwanese birth and infant death certificates and to revisions in earlier files containing these certificates during the course of the research. Very preliminary versions of the paper with results that turned out to be incorrect after inconsistencies in the data were uncovered and resolved were presented at the Fifth World Congress of the International Health Economics Association and at seminars at McGill University and National Taiwan University. More recent versions of the paper with correct empirical results were presented at the Seventh World Congress of the International Health Economics Association and at seminars at the University of Melbourne, Monash University, the University of Queensland, Emory University, and the University of Chicago. We wish to thank the participants in those forums for helpful comments and suggestions. We also wish to thank Jason Hockenberry for research assistance. The views expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Bureau of Economic Research.