This research aims to better understand the impact of the Matlab health interventions by using panel data to control for unobservables and understand the dynamics and long-term effects of these programs. Heterogeneity in the fertility response to the family planning program is analyzed, using sequential fertility to isolate the family planning program from other interventions and examine heterogeneity based on time-varying characteristics. The link between childhood measles vaccination and school enrollment is examined using instrumental variables, and is motivated by the hypothesis that by avoiding the long-term health effects of a disease, vaccinated children are higher-achieving. Both analyses generate interesting findings that are not captured using the traditional methodologies and outcomes of program evaluation.
Julia Driessen, PhD, is an assistant professor of health policy and management in the Graduate School of Public Health at the University of Pittsburgh. She has a secondary appointment in the Department of Economics. In 2011 Dr. Driessen received her PhD in Economics from Johns Hopkins University. Her research interests include program evaluation and the links between health interventions and socioeconomic status, with an emphasis on heterogeneity of program effects as well as long-term outcomes. Recent research has analyzed the schooling effects of childhood measles vaccination and variation in the fertility response to a family planning program in Bangladesh. Her primary new interest since arriving at Pitt is the clinical and financial effects of electronic medical records in developing countries.