Impact of income maintenance on low birth weight: evidence from the Gary Experiment

J Hum Resour. Fall 1979;14(4):434-62.


Birth weight is a useful index of infant health. Low birth weight (5.5 pounds or less) is associated with high rates of infant mortality and morbidity. Low birth weight is also associated with low socioeconomic status. The question arises, therefore, whether income transfers can affect the incidence of low birth weight among the poor. The impact of an expanded income support plan on low birth weight was analyzed using data on 404 infants born to participants in the Gary Income Maintenance Experiment. A significant health response was observed for children of women who face high-risk pregnancies.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Evaluation Studies as Topic
  • Female
  • Financing, Government
  • Humans
  • Income Tax
  • Indiana
  • Infant Mortality
  • Infant, Low Birth Weight*
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Models, Theoretical
  • Pregnancy
  • Public Assistance*