Online Program Home
  My Program

All Times EDT

Abstract Details

Activity Number: 83 - Contributed Poster Presentations: Health Policy Statistics Section
Type: Contributed
Date/Time: Monday, August 3, 2020 : 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM
Sponsor: Health Policy Statistics Section
Abstract #312810
Title: Analysis of the Effect of Drug Induced Homicide Prosecution Media Reports on Drug Overdose Deaths
Author(s): Kelly Kung* and Leo Beletsky and Judith Lok and Natasha Martin
Companies: Boston University and Northeastern University and Boston University Department of Mathematics & Statistics and University of California San Diego
Keywords: drug overdose; difference in differences; drug induced homicide prosecution; causal inference

The overdose crisis has sparked an increase in drug induced homicide (DIH) laws and prosecutions, whereby those distributing drugs to overdose victims are charged with the deaths. Such prosecutions are presented as an overdose prevention measure, but their impact has not been empirically assessed. In our paper, we estimate the impact of an increase in DIH charges covered by the media between 2000 - 2017. Using overdose death data from the CDC, we estimate how the risk of drug overdose deaths in the 50 states depends on the absence/presence of media reports of prosecutions, while controlling for other relevant policy interventions. Time effects are smoothed and can vary by U.S. region. We estimate that an increase in media coverage of DIH prosecutions is associated with an approximately 7.7% increase in overdose deaths. Further analysis suggests that in the states analyzed, there was a total of approximately 32,000 deaths attributable to DIH prosecutions in the 17 years. The analysis suggests that DIH prosecutions may actually aggravate the crisis they are purported to solve.

Authors who are presenting talks have a * after their name.

Back to the full JSM 2020 program