The United States spends billions of dollars annually on social and economic policies aimed at improving the lives of its citizens, but the health consequences associated with these policies are rarely considered. In Making Americans Healthier, a group of multidisciplinary experts shows how social and economic policies seemingly unrelated to medical well-being have dramatic consequences for the health of the American people.
Most previous research concerning problems with health and healthcare in the United States has focused narrowly on issues of medical care and insurance coverage, but Making Americans Healthier demonstrates the important health consequences that policymakers overlook in traditional cost-benefit evaluations of social policy. The contributors examine six critical policy areas: civil rights, education, income support, employment, welfare, and neighborhood and housing. Among the important findings in this book, David Cutler and Adriana Lleras-Muney document the robust relationship between educational attainment and health, and estimate that the health benefits of education may exceed even the well-documented financial returns of education. Pamela Herd, James House, and Robert Schoeni discover notable health benefits associated with the Supplemental Security Income Program, which provides financial support for elderly and disabled Americans. George Kaplan, Nalini Ranjit, and Sarah Burgard document a large and unanticipated improvement in the health of African-American women following the enactment of civil rights legislation in the 1960s.
Making Americans Healthier presents ground-breaking evidence that the health impact of many social policies is substantial. The important findings in this book pave the way for promising new avenues for intervention and convincingly demonstrate that ultimately social and economic policy is health policy.
A Volume in the National Poverty Center Series on Poverty and Public Policy
|Publisher:||Russell Sage Foundation|
|Series:||National Poverty Center Series on Poverty and Public Policy Series|
|Edition description:||New Edition|
|Product dimensions:||6.63(w) x 9.25(h) x 1.50(d)|
About the Author
ROBERT F. SCHOENI is professor of public policy and economics, the University of Michigan. JAMES S. HOUSE is Angus Campbell Collegiate Professor of Sociology and Survey Research, the University of Michigan. GEORGE A. KAPLAN is the Thomas Francis Collegiate Professor of Public Health, the University of Michigan. HAROLD POLLACK is associate professor of social service administration, University of Chicago.
Table of ContentsPreface xi
The Health Effects of Social and Economic Policy: The Promise and Challenge for Research and Policy James S. House Robert F. Schoeni George A. Kaplan Harold Pollack 3
Education Policy 27
Education and Health: Evaluating Theories and Evidence David M. Cutler Adriana Lleras-Muney 29
Health Effects of Human Development Policies Daniel P. Keating Sharon Z. Simonton 61
Income Transfer Policy 95
Income Support Policies and Health Among the Elderly Pamela Herd James S. House Robert F. Schoeni 97
Did the Introduction of Food Stamps Affect Birth Outcomes in California? Janet Currie Enrico Moretti 122
Civil Rights 143
Lifting Gates, Lengthening Lives: Did Civil Rights Policies Improve the Health of African American Women in the 1960s and 1970s? George A. Kaplan Nalini Ranjit Sarah A. Burgard 145
Macroeconomic and Employment Policy 171
Macroeconomic Conditions, Health, and Government Policy Christopher J. Ruhm 173
The New Employment Contract and Worker Health in the United States Richard H. Price Sarah A. Burgard 201
Welfare Policy 229
Welfare Reform and Indirect Impacts on Health Marianne P. Bitler Hilary W. Hoynes 231
The Effects of Welfare and Child Support Policies on Maternal Health and Well-Being Jean Knab Irv Garfinkel Sara McLanahan 281
Housing and Neighborhood Policy 307
Residential Environments and Obesity: What Can We Learn About Policy Interventions from Observational Studies? Jeffrey D. Morenoff Ana V. Diez Roux Ben B. Hansen Theresa L. Osypuk 309
Are Some Neighborhoods Better for Child Health Than Others? Rebecca C. Fauth Jeanne Brooks-Gunn 344
Social and Economic Policies as Health Policy: Moving Toward a New Approach to Improving Health in America Harold Pollack George A. Kaplan James S. House Robert F. Schoeni 379
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This is an excellent book on the health effects of social and economic policies. Written by leading experts from a range of disciplines, Making American's Healthier dovetails wonderfully with my own work on Gender and Health as it sheds light on the range of policies that shape individuals' opportunity to pursue a healthy life and thus contribute to social disparities in health and longevity. Making Americans Healthier will soon be required reading for researchers, policy makers and anyone interested in understanding the policy levers for improving population health and reducing health disparities.