Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Legacy Department

Applied Economics


Maloney, Michael T


The Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program is the only welfare program that extends cash benefits to children for being blind or disabled. The largest growth in the program has occurred towards children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Using in-house data from the National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), this research measures parents` sensitivity to having their children diagnosed with ADHD given increases in real SSI payments. Children who are more likely to receive SSI benefits given income and living condition are also more elastic to increases in payments through becoming diagnosed with ADHD. In addition, parents alternate between claiming that a child has an emotional or behavioral problem and having their child diagnosed with ADHD.

Included in

Economics Commons