Disease Prevention / Health Promotion

Interventions, education and incentives that promote healthy behaviors and improve health outcomes.

Impact of State Ignition Interlock Laws on Alcohol-Involved Crash Deaths in the United States

Apr. 13, 2016

Elinore Kaufman, Douglas Wiebe

In the American Journal of Public Health, Elinore Kaufman and Douglas Wiebe investigate the impact of universal ignition interlock requirements on car crash deaths involving alcohol. Ignition interlocks use breath-analysis technology to prevent intoxicated drivers from taking the wheel. The authors analyzed data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for 1999 to 2013. They compared alcohol-related car crash deaths in the 18 states with universal interlock requirements to the 32 states without them. They find that in states that require universal ignition...

Habit formation in children: Evidence from incentives for healthy eating

Mar. 14, 2016

George Loewenstein, Joseph Price, Kevin Volpp

In the Journal of Health Economics, George Loewenstein and colleagues, including Kevin Volpp, examine the role of incentives in promoting healthy eating behaviors in children. The investigators conducted a field experiment at 40 elementary schools involving 8,000 children and 400,000 child-day observations, which tested whether providing short-run incentives can create habit formation in children. Over a 3- or 5-week period, students received an incentive (a token worth $0.25 that could be used at school store, carnival or book fair) for eating a serving of fruits or vegetables...

Neighborhood Matters, Block by Block

Feb. 24, 2016

The Flint water crisis is a stark and grim reminder of the connections among housing, neighborhoods, and health. But neighborhoods influence health and well-being in more subtle ways that do not often make the national news. Living amidst poverty and violence can affect individuals and their life-course in ways that are hard to measure, yet important to discern.

A behavioral economics intervention to increase pertussis vaccination among infant caregivers: A randomized feasibility trial

Feb. 17, 2016

Alison Buttenheim, Alexander Fiks, Randall Burson, Eileen Wang, Susan Coffin, Joshua Metlay, Kristen Feemster

In Vaccine, Alison Buttenheim and colleagues, including Alexander Fiks and Kristen Feemster, evaluate the feasibility and impact of interventions informed by behavioral economics to increase Tdap vaccination among caregivers of young infants. Participants were randomly assigned to one of four conditions: discount voucher, free voucher, informational support and no informational support. Tdap vaccination was assessed by tracking voucher redemption and following up with participants by phone. Only 1 subject out of a total of 95 participants redeemed the retail pharmacy Tdap voucher...

Move It Or Lose It

Feb. 16, 2016

The latest study by LDI Senior Fellow Mitesh Patel and colleagues adds to our growing understanding of how best to frame financial incentives to encourage healthy behaviors, and employer wellness managers should take note.