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Soft drink consumption has been hypothesized as one of the major factors in the growing rates of obesity in the US. Nearly two-thirds of all states currently tax soft drinks using excise taxes, sales taxes, or special exemptions to food exemptions from sales taxes to reduce consumption of this product, raise revenue, and improve public health. In this(More)
One of the largest drivers of the current obesity epidemic is thought to be excessive consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages. Some have proposed vending machine restrictions and taxing soft drinks to curb children's consumption of soft drinks; to a large extent, these policies have not been evaluated empirically. We examine these policies using two(More)
The views expressed herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Early Childhood Research Collaborative. Abstract This paper calculates the public savings (financial benefits) from greater public investments in the education of African American males. Over one-fifth of each age cohort of black males in the U.S. is not a(More)
This paper contributes to the growing literature on the relationship between business cycles and mental health. It is one of the first applications in the economics literature to incorporate data on web searches from Google Insights for Search, and these unique data allow the opportunity to estimate the association between weekly unemployment insurance (UI)(More)
BACKGROUND Little is known about the cost-utility of population-based alcohol interventions. One barrier to research has been the lack of preference weights needed to calculate Quality Adjusted Life Years (QALYs). Preference weights can be estimated from measures of health-related quality of life (HRQOL). The objective of this study was to describe(More)
BACKGROUND Unhealthy alcohol use could impair recovery of older patients after medical or surgical hospitalizations. However, no prior research has evaluated whether older patients who screen positive for unhealthy alcohol use are at increased risk of readmissions or emergency department (ED) visits within 30 days after discharge. This study examined the(More)
We explore financial conflicts of interest faced by doctors. Pharmaceutical firms frequently pay physicians in the form of meals, travel, and speaking fees. Over half of the 334,000 physicians in our sample receive payment of some kind. When a doctor is paid, we find that he is more likely to prescribe a drug of the paying firm, both relative to close(More)
We investigate how risky health behaviors and self-reported health vary with the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) and during stock market crashes. Because stock market indices are leading indicators of economic performance, this research contributes to our understanding of the macroeconomic determinants of health. Existing studies typically rely on the(More)
Recent proposals argue that a fast food tax may be an effective policy lever for reducing population weight. Although there is growing evidence for a negative association between fast food prices and weight among adolescents, less is known about adults. That any measured relationship to date is causal is unclear because there has been no attempt to separate(More)