The latest from the Oregon Medicaid Experiment: Impacts on labor force and public program participation

Prior TIE coverage of the Oregon Medicaid Experiment is here, and the new NBER working paper on labor force and public program effects is here. The emailed summary from the authors, excerpted and quoted below, is as good as any.

On labor market outcomes:

Medicaid had no detectable effect on labor market participation, earnings, or the probability of having income above the poverty level.

Labor force participation decreased by a statistically insignificant 1.6 percentage points.

95 percent confidence intervals allow us to reject that Medicaid caused a decline in labor force participation of more than 4.4 percentage points or an increase of more than 1.2 percentage points.

On public program participation:

Medicaid had no economically and statistically significant effect on receipt of cash welfare (TANF) or disability insurance programs (SSI or SSDI).

Effects on TANF and SSI were not expected, because groups eligible for those programs would have been eligible for Medicaid independent of the lottery.

Consistent with previous findings for the Oregon Health Insurance Experiment, selection in the lottery increased participation in food stamps.


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