Meier and McFarlane find that Medicaid funding of abortions and public subsidies to family planning programs cause improved outcomes for maternal and infant health. These results provide an additional rationale for expanding public funding for abortions and family planning programs, including such procedures in the basic package or even as a preventive service under health care reform. On a methodological level, this editorial notes that Meier and McFarlane measure abortion policy by the number of funded abortions, rather than by state policy on the Medicaid funding of abortions. This measure confounds policy variation with variation in women's choice of abortion given an abortion policy, and is likely to overstate the true effects of state Medicaid funding of abortions on child health.
Originally published in: American Journal of Public Health, v. 84. no. 9, September 1994, pp. 1377-1378.
This report is part of the RAND reprint series. The Reprint was a product of RAND from 1992 to 2011 that represented previously published journal articles, book chapters, and reports with the permission of the publisher. RAND reprints were formally reviewed in accordance with the publisher's editorial policy and compliant with RAND's rigorous quality assurance standards for quality and objectivity. For select current RAND journal articles, see External Publications.
This document and trademark(s) contained herein are protected by law. This representation of RAND intellectual property is provided for noncommercial use only. Unauthorized posting of this publication online is prohibited; linking directly to this product page is encouraged. Permission is required from RAND to reproduce, or reuse in another form, any of its research documents for commercial purposes. For information on reprint and reuse permissions, please visit www.rand.org/pubs/permissions.
RAND is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.