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A simple recipe: Estimating the effect of a prenatal nutrition program on child health at birth

TitleA simple recipe: Estimating the effect of a prenatal nutrition program on child health at birth
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsHaeck, C., and Lefebvre P.
JournalResearch Group on Human Capital Working Paper
Abstract

We study the impact of a Canadian prenatal nutrition program on child health at birth. The objective of the OLO program is to reduce the incidence of prematurity and low birth weight by providing a specific food basket and nutritional guidance to pregnant women in situations of poverty. Our identification strategy exploits exogeneous variations in access to the program caused by the progressive implementation of the program by local community service centers. The administrative birth records used in this study provide early health outcomes (birth weight and gestational age) for over 1.5 million newborns, along with a number of family characteristics. Our results suggest that the program had a positive impact on the birth weight of children and reduced the incidence of low birth weight, with larger impacts on children of mothers with a high school degree or less. While the cost of the program is equivalent to the US comparable WIC program, the gains on birth weight are larger.

URLhttp://grch.esg.uqam.ca/working-papers-series/?lang=en
Document URLhttps://www.dropbox.com/s/3dam8ilqitum8oj/haeck_lefebvre_grch_wp14-01.pdf?dl=0