Life, death, and mental health: How access to care helps children succeed

Professor Janet Currie, Chair of the Department of Economics at Princeton University, gave the 2018 IFS Annual Lecture on 27 September.

The US provides a case study of how increasing access to health care prenatally and in early childhood reduces deaths and leads to long-term improvements in child and young adult outcomes. While inequality in mortality increased in the U.S. among older adults, it declined among children and approached the low levels seen in countries such as Canada. Improved mental health appears to be an important mechanism, driving better outcomes in surviving children.

Professor Currie’s research focuses on health and wellbeing, especially of children. She has written about early intervention programs, programs to expand health insurance and improve health care, public housing, and food and nutrition programs. Her current research focuses on socioeconomic differences in health and access to health care, environmental threats to health, and mental health.



Topics:  Health economics Poverty and income inequality Welfare state and social Europe

Tags:  mortality, infant mortality, Mental health

Henry Putnam Professor of Economics and Public Affairs and Director of the Center for Health and Well Being, Princeton University


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