Essays in Health and Labor
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To explore mechanisms driving the gender gap in competitive environments, we use an experimental setting to identify how the potential for cheating affects the individual's decision to enter competition and how this effect differs by gender. We find evidence that the potential for dishonesty reduces the probability that females enter competitions whereas cheating has little effect on the decisions of men. In addressing the opioid epidemic we exploit variation in the timing of Prescription Drug Monitoring Programs (PDMPs) implementation across states to identify the effectiveness of these programs on reducing opioid abuse. Within a difference-in-differences framework, we consider the effect of heterogeneity across program attributes on opioid-related treatment admissions and overdose deaths. Results suggest only those programs that require prescribers to access the databases prior to prescribing are effective in reducing opioid-related treatment admissions. We then explore the effects of prescription drugs on health behaviors exploiting the establishment of Medicare Part D to identify the potential substitution effects between prescription drugs and preventative-care behaviors, attitudes over risk and medical care, and other health-related behaviors. We also explore the potential for prescription-drug coverage to mitigate any preventative care or behavioral changes following a chronic or acute health shock. We find no evidence to suggest prescription-drug coverage alters the use of preventative care.