Maya Rossin-Slater is an Associate Professor of Health Policy at Stanford University School of Medicine. She is also a Senior Fellow at the Stanford Institute for Economic and Policy Research (SIEPR), a Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) and a Research Affiliate at the Institute of Labor Economics (IZA). She received her Ph.D. in Economics from Columbia University, and her BA in Economics and Statistics from the University of California at Berkeley. Rossin-Slater’s research includes work in health, public, and labor economics. She focuses on issues in maternal and child well-being, family structure and behavior, health disparities, and public policies affecting disadvantaged populations in the United States and other developed countries. She is the recipient of the National Science Foundation CAREER Award, is the PI on several grants from the National Institutes of Health, and has published articles in a variety of peer-reviewed journals, including the American Economic Review, Journal of Political Economy, American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, Journal of Health Economics, Journal of Public Economics, and Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Academic Appointments

Honors & Awards

  • Outstanding Sponsor Award, Stanford Faculty Women's Forum (06/2021)
  • CAREER Award, National Science Foundation (2018-2023)

Current Research and Scholarly Interests

Health and public economics; public policy; families; health disparities

Stanford Advisees

All Publications

  • Association Between Cervical Cancer Screening Guidelines and Preterm Delivery Among Females Aged 18 to 24 Years. JAMA health forum Bromley-Dulfano, R. A., Rossin-Slater, M., Bundorf, M. K. 2023; 4 (7): e231974


    Cervical cancer screening is associated with reduced cervical cancer mortality; however, clinical trials have also shown an association between excisional procedures for cervical neoplasia and an increased risk of preterm delivery (PTD). National screening guidelines must weigh adverse effects on birth outcomes against benefits of cancer prevention.To ascertain the population-level association between the number of guideline-recommended cervical cancer screenings and downstream PTD risk among females aged 18 to 24 years.This cross-sectional study used a difference-in-differences approach based on variation in the recommended number of cervical cancer screenings (over time and across individuals giving birth at different ages) to estimate the association between the cumulative recommended number of screenings (by the time of childbirth) and PTD risk. National Vital Statistics System data from females aged 18 to 24 years who had a singleton, nulliparous birth in the US between 1996 and 2018 were used. Regression models were adjusted for maternal educational level, race and ethnicity, comorbidities, marital status, and prenatal care visits. Data were analyzed between June 2020 and March 2023.A constructed variable capturing the cumulative number of guideline-recommended cervical cancer screenings for an individual based on their age and year of childbirth.Binary indicators for PTD and very preterm delivery (VPTD), defined as delivery before 37 and 34 weeks' gestational age, respectively, and gestational age was measured in weeks from the first day of the last menstrual period.Among 11 333 151 females aged 18 to 24 years who gave birth between 1996 and 2018, 2 069 713 were Black (18.3%), 2 601 225 were Hispanic (23.0%), 6 068 498 were White (53.5%) individuals, and 593 715 (5.2%) were individuals of other race or ethnicity (Alaska Native; American Indian; Asian; Pacific Islander; multiracial; or unknown or missing race or ethnicity). Mean (SD) age was 20.9 (1.9) years, and 766 001 individuals (6.8%) had hypertension or diabetes. The mean (SD) number of guideline-recommended screenings by time of childbirth was 2.4 (2.2). Overall, PTD and VPTD occurred in 1 140 490 individuals (10.1%) and 333 040 (2.9%) of births, respectively. One additional recommended screening was associated with a 0.073 (95% CI, 0.026-0.120) percentage-point increase in PTD risk but no statistically significant change in VPTD risk. Females with hypertension or diabetes had a higher increase in PTD risk than those without these comorbidities (0.26 [95% CI, 0.11-0.4] vs 0.06 [95% CI, 0.01-0.10] percentage points; Wald test P < .001).Findings of this cross-sectional study suggest that additional recommended cervical cancer screenings before birth were associated with an increased risk of PTD. These results can be used in future simulation models integrating oncological trade-offs to help ascertain optimal screening strategies.

    View details for DOI 10.1001/jamahealthforum.2023.1974

    View details for PubMedID 37477927

  • Is the Social Safety Net a Long-Term Investment? Large-Scale Evidence From the Food Stamps Program REVIEW OF ECONOMIC STUDIES Bailey, M. J., Hoynes, H., Rossin-Slater, M., Walker, R. 2023
  • Unequal use of social insurance benefits: The role of employers JOURNAL OF ECONOMETRICS Bana, S., Bedard, K., Rossin-Slater, M., Stearns, J. 2023; 233 (2): 633-660
  • Efficiency versus Equity in the Provision of In-Kind Benefits Evidence from Cost Containment in the California WIC Program JOURNAL OF HUMAN RESOURCES Meckel, K., Rossin-Slater, M., Uniat, L. 2023; 58 (2): 363-392
  • The impact of paid family leave on employers: evidence from New York COMMUNITY WORK & FAMILY Bartel, A., Rossin-Slater, M., Ruhm, C., Slopen, M., Waldfogel, J. 2023
  • The Impacts of Paid Family and Medical Leave on Worker Health, Family Well-Being, and Employer Outcomes. Annual review of public health Bartel, A., Rossin-Slater, M., Ruhm, C., Slopen, M., Waldfogel, J. 2022


    This article reviews the evidence on the impacts of paid family and medical leave (PFML) policies on workers' health, family well-being, and employer outcomes. While an extensive body of research demonstrates the mostly beneficial effects of PFML taken by new parents on infant, child, and parental health, less is known about its impact on employees who need leave to care for older children, adult family members, or elderly relatives. The evidence on employers is similarly limited but indicates that PFML does not impose major burdens on them. Taken together, the evidence suggests that PFML policies are likely to have important short- and long-term benefits for population health, without generating large costs for employers. At the same time, further research is needed to understand the effects of different policy parameters (e.g., wage replacement rate and leave duration) and of other types of leave beyond parental leave. Expected final online publication date for the Annual Review of Public Health, Volume 44 is April 2023. Please see for revised estimates.

    View details for DOI 10.1146/annurev-publhealth-071521-025257

    View details for PubMedID 36332659

  • Violence While in Utero: The Impact of Assaults during Pregnancy on Birth Outcomes REVIEW OF ECONOMICS AND STATISTICS Currie, J., Mueller-Smith, M., Rossin-Slater, M. 2022; 104 (3): 525-540
  • Impact of Medicaid Expansion on Interpregnancy Interval. Women's health issues : official publication of the Jacobs Institute of Women's Health Liu, C., Snowden, J. M., Rossin-Slater, M., Torche, F., DiTosto, J. D., Carmichael, S. L. 1800


    OBJECTIVES: Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) improved access to reproductive health care for low-income women and birthing people who were previously ineligible for Medicaid. We aimed to evaluate if the expansion affected the risk of having a short interpregnancy interval (IPI), a preventable risk factor for adverse pregnancy outcomes.METHODS: We evaluated parous singleton births to mothers aged 19 or older from U.S. birth certificate data 2009-2018. We estimated the effect of residing in a state that expanded Medicaid access (expansion status determined at 60days after the prior live birth) on the risk of having a short IPI (<12months) using difference-in-differences (DID) methods in linear probability models. We stratified the analyses by maternal characteristics and county-level reproductive health care access.RESULTS: Overall risk of short IPI was 14.9% in expansion states and 16.3% in non-expansion states. The expansion was not associated with a significant change in risk of having a short IPI (adjusted mean percentage point change 1.24 [-1.64, 4.12]). Stratified results also did not provide support for an association.CONCLUSIONS: ACA Medicaid expansion did not have an impact on risk of short IPI. Preventing short IPI may require more comprehensive policy interventions in addition to health care access.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.whi.2021.12.004

    View details for PubMedID 35016841

  • What to Expect When It Gets Hotter The Impacts of Prenatal Exposure to Extreme Temperature on Maternal Health AMERICAN JOURNAL OF HEALTH ECONOMICS Kim, J., Lee, A., Rossin-Slater, M. 2021

    View details for DOI 10.1086/714359

    View details for Web of Science ID 000662288900001

  • Local exposure to school shootings and youth antidepressant use. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America Rossin-Slater, M., Schnell, M., Schwandt, H., Trejo, S., Uniat, L. 2020


    While over 240,000 American students experienced a school shooting in the last two decades, little is known about the impacts of these events on the mental health of surviving youth. Using large-scale prescription data from 2006 to 2015, we examine the effects of 44 school shootings on youth antidepressant use. Our empirical strategy compares the number of antidepressant prescriptions written by providers practicing 0 to 5 miles from a school that experienced a shooting (treatment areas) to the number of prescriptions written by providers practicing 10 to 15 miles away (reference areas), both before and after the shooting. We include month-by-year and school-by-area fixed effects in all specifications, thereby controlling for overall trends in antidepressant use and all time-invariant differences across locations. We find that local exposure to fatal school shootings increases youth antidepressant use by 21.4% in the following 2 y. These effects are smaller in areas with a higher density of mental health providers who focus on behavioral, rather than pharmacological, interventions.

    View details for DOI 10.1073/pnas.2000804117

    View details for PubMedID 32900924

  • Time On with Baby and Time Off from Work FUTURE OF CHILDREN Rossin-Slater, M., Stearns, J. 2020; 30 (2): 35–51
  • The Impacts of Paid Family Leave Benefits: Regression Kink Evidence from California Administrative Data JOURNAL OF POLICY ANALYSIS AND MANAGEMENT Bana, S. H., Bedard, K., Rossin-Slater, M. 2020

    View details for DOI 10.1002/pam.22242

    View details for Web of Science ID 000555529300001

  • What is the Added Value of Preschool for Poor Children? Long-Term and Intergenerational Impacts and Interactions with an Infant Health Intervention AMERICAN ECONOMIC JOURNAL-APPLIED ECONOMICS Rossin-Slater, M., Wust, M. 2020; 12 (3): 255–86
  • Racial and ethnic disparities in access to and use of paid family and medical leave: evidence from four nationally representative datasets MONTHLY LABOR REVIEW Bartel, A. R., Kim, S., Nam, J., Rossin-Slater, M., Ruhm, C., Waldfogel, J. 2019
  • Childhood health shocks, comparative advantage, and long-term outcomes: Evidence from the last Danish polio epidemic. Journal of health economics Gensowski, M. n., Nielsen, T. H., Nielsen, N. M., Rossin-Slater, M. n., Wüst, M. n. 2019; 66: 27–36


    This paper examines the long-term effects of childhood disability on individuals' educational and occupational choices, late-career labor market participation, and mortality. We merge medical records on children hospitalized with poliomyelitis during the 1952 Danish epidemic to census and administrative data, and exploit quasi-random variation in paralysis incidence in this population. While childhood disability increases the likelihood of early retirement and disability pension receipt at age 50, paralytic polio survivors are more likely to obtain a university degree and to go on to work in white-collar and computer-demanding jobs than their non-paralytic counterparts. Our results are consistent with individuals making educational and occupational choices that reflect a shift in the comparative advantage of cognitive versus physical skills. We also find that paralytic polio patients from low socioeconomic status backgrounds are more likely to die prematurely than their non-paralytic counterparts, whereas there is no effect on mortality among polio survivors from more advantaged backgrounds.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jhealeco.2019.03.010

    View details for PubMedID 31100634

  • Paid Family Leave, Fathers' Leave-Taking, and Leave-Sharing in Dual-Earner Households JOURNAL OF POLICY ANALYSIS AND MANAGEMENT Bartel, A. P., Rossin-Slater, M., Ruhm, C. J., Stearns, J., Waldfogel, J. 2018; 37 (1): 10–U44


    Using difference-in-difference and difference-in-difference-in-difference designs, we study California's Paid Family Leave (CA-PFL) program, the first source of government-provided paid parental leave available to fathers in the Unites States. Relative to the pre-treatment mean, fathers of infants in California are 46 percent more likely to be on leave when CA-PFL is available. In households where both parents work, we find suggestive evidence that CA-PFL increases both father-only leave-taking (i.e., father on leave while mother is at work) and joint leave-taking (i.e., both parents on leave at the same time). Effects are larger for fathers of first-born children than for fathers of later-born children.

    View details for PubMedID 29320808

  • The transition to parenthood as a critical window for adult health. The American psychologist Saxbe, D., Rossin-Slater, M., Goldenberg, D. 2018; 73 (9): 1190–1200


    Becoming a parent is a transformative experience, marked by hormonal changes and neuroplasticity as well as shifts in self-concept, social roles, and daily routines. Although the arrival of a new baby is often a joyful event, the postpartum period can also be a time of heightened psychosocial stress and health behavior changes, including significant sleep disruption and decreased physical activity. Markers of allostatic load, such as physiological stress and inflammation, may also become dysregulated during this time. Given these neurobiological, psychosocial, and behavioral changes, the transition to parenthood may shape health trajectories in midlife. For many mothers and fathers, the transition to parenthood represents an inflection point for obesity, such that perinatal weight gains are retained long-term. Similarly, many individuals experience their 1st episode of major depression during the postpartum period. In sum, the transition to parenthood may represent a critical window for determining both mental and physical health in midlife and beyond. Physical and mental health problems over the transition to parenthood may be exacerbated for parents without access to protected, paid time off from employment. Known disparities in mood disorders, obesity, and allostatic load may be linked to risk factors stemming from the perinatal period. This article relates the importance of the transition to parenthood to population health and discusses parental leave policy as an example of an initiative that can support parents and relieve stress during the perinatal period. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved).

    View details for PubMedID 30525801

  • The Transition to Parenthood as a Critical Window for Adult Health AMERICAN PSYCHOLOGIST Saxbe, D., Rossin-Slater, M., Goldenberg, D. 2018; 73 (9): 1190–1200

    View details for DOI 10.1037/amp0000376

    View details for Web of Science ID 000452426700019

  • Parental responses to child support obligations: Evidence from administrative data JOURNAL OF PUBLIC ECONOMICS Rossin-Slater, M., Wust, M. 2018; 164: 183–96
  • Does Managed Care Widen Infant Health Disparities? Evidence from Texas Medicaid AMERICAN ECONOMIC JOURNAL-ECONOMIC POLICY Kuziemko, I., Meckel, K., Rossin-Slater, M. 2018; 10 (3): 255–83
  • Trends and Disparities in Leave Use under California's Paid Family Leave Program: New Evidence from Administrative Data Bana, S., Bedard, K., Rossin-Slater, M. AMER ECONOMIC ASSOC. 2018: 388–91
  • Family Ruptures, Stress, and the Mental Health of the Next Generation AMERICAN ECONOMIC REVIEW Persson, P., Rossin-Slater, M. 2018; 108 (4-5): 1214–52
  • Family Ruptures, Stress, and the Mental Health of the Next Generation. The American economic review Persson, P., Rossin-Slater, M. 2018; 108 (4): 1214-52


    This paper studies how in utero exposure to maternal stress from family ruptures affects later mental health. We find that prenatal exposure to the death of a maternal relative increases take-up of ADHD medications during childhood and anti-anxiety and depression medications in adulthood. Further, family ruptures during pregnancy depress birth outcomes and raise the risk of perinatal complications necessitating hospitalization. Our results suggest large welfare gains from preventing fetal stress from family ruptures and possibly from economically induced stressors such as unemployment. They further suggest that greater stress exposure among the poor may partially explain the intergenerational persistence of poverty.

    View details for PubMedID 30091569

  • Family Ruptures, Stress, and the Mental Health of the Next Generation: Reply AMERICAN ECONOMIC REVIEW Persson, P., Rossin-Slater, M. 2018; 108 (4-5): 1256–63
  • Relationship between season of birth, temperature exposure, and later life wellbeing PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA Isen, A., Rossin-Slater, M., Walker, R. 2017; 114 (51): 13447–52


    We study how exposure to extreme temperatures in early periods of child development is related to adult economic outcomes measured 30 y later. Our analysis uses administrative earnings records for over 12 million individuals born in the United States between 1969 and 1977, linked to fine-scale, daily weather data and location and date of birth. We calculate the length of time each individual is exposed to different temperatures in utero and in early childhood, and we estimate flexible regression models that allow for nonlinearities in the relationship between temperature and long-run outcomes. We find that an extra day with mean temperatures above 32 °C in utero and in the first year after birth is associated with a 0.1% reduction in adult annual earnings at age 30. Temperature sensitivity is evident in multiple periods of early development, ranging from the first trimester of gestation to age 6-12 mo. We observe that household air-conditioning adoption, which increased dramatically over the time period studied, mitigates nearly all of the estimated temperature sensitivity.

    View details for PubMedID 29203654

  • Every Breath You Take-Every Dollar You'll Make: The Long-Term Consequences of the Clean Air Act of 1970 JOURNAL OF POLITICAL ECONOMY Isen, A., Rossin-Slater, M., Walker, W. 2017; 125 (3): 848–902

    View details for DOI 10.1086/691465

    View details for Web of Science ID 000401803200006

  • Signing Up New Fathers: Do Paternity Establishment Initiatives Increase Marriage, Parental Investment, and Child Well-Being? AMERICAN ECONOMIC JOURNAL-APPLIED ECONOMICS Rossin-Slater, M. 2017; 9 (2): 93–130
  • Early-Life Origins of Life-Cycle well-Being: Research and Policy Implications JOURNAL OF POLICY ANALYSIS AND MANAGEMENT Currie, J., Rossin-Slater, M. 2015; 34 (1): 208–42


    Mounting evidence across different disciplines suggests that early-life conditions can have consequences on individual outcomes throughout the life cycle. Relative to other developed countries, the United States fares poorly on standard indicators of early-life health, and this disadvantage may have profound consequences not only for population well-being, but also for economic growth and competitiveness in a global economy. In this paper, we first discuss the research on the strength of the link between early-life health and adult outcomes, and then provide an evidence-based review of the effectiveness of existing U.S. policies targeting the early-life environment. We conclude that there is a robust and economically meaningful relationship between early-life conditions and well-being throughout the life cycle, as measured by adult health, educational attainment, labor market attachment, and other indicators of socioeconomic status. However, there is some variation in the degree to which current policies in the United States are effective in improving early-life conditions. Among existing programs, some of the most effective are the Special Supplemental Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), home visiting with nurse practitioners, and high-quality, center-based early-childhood care and education. In contrast, the evidence on other policies such as prenatal care and family leave is more mixed and limited.

    View details for DOI 10.1002/pam.21805

    View details for Web of Science ID 000351221400011

    View details for PubMedID 25558491

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4773906

  • Paternity Acknowledgment in 2 Million Birth Records from Michigan PLOS ONE Almond, D., Rossin-Slater, M. 2013; 8 (7): e70042


    Out-of-wedlock childbearing is more common in the U.S. than in other countries and becoming more so. A growing share of such non-marital births identify the father, which can create a legal entitlement to child support. Relatively little is known about individual determinants of the decision to establish paternity, in part because of data limitations. In this paper, we evaluate all birth records in Michigan from 1993 to 2006, which have been merged to the paternity registry. In 2006, 30,231 Michigan children, almost one quarter of all Michigan births, were born to unmarried mothers and had paternity acknowledged. We find that births with paternity acknowledged have worse outcomes along various health and socio-economic dimensions relative to births to married parents, but better outcomes relative to births to unmarried parents without paternity acknowledgement. Furthermore, unmarried men who father sons are significantly more likely to acknowledge paternity than fathers of daughters.

    View details for DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0070042

    View details for Web of Science ID 000322132100086

    View details for PubMedID 23894583

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3718738

  • WIC in your neighborhood: New evidence on the impacts of geographic access to clinics JOURNAL OF PUBLIC ECONOMICS Rossin-Slater, M. 2013; 102: 51–69


    A large body of evidence indicates that conditions in-utero and health at birth matter for individuals' long-run outcomes, suggesting potential value in programs aimed at pregnant women and young children. This paper uses a novel identification strategy and data from birth and administrative records over 2005-2009 to provide causal estimates of the effects of geographic access to the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC). My empirical approach uses within-ZIP-code variation in WIC clinic presence together with maternal fixed effects, and accounts for the potential endogeneity of mobility, gestational-age bias, and measurement error in gestation. I find that access to WIC increases food benefit take-up, pregnancy weight gain, birth weight, and the probability of breastfeeding initiation at the time of hospital discharge. The estimated effects are strongest for mothers with a high school education or less, who are most likely eligible for WIC services.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jpubeco.2013.03.009

    View details for Web of Science ID 000319646800005

    View details for PubMedID 24043906

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3772681

  • Weathering the storm: Hurricanes and birth outcomes JOURNAL OF HEALTH ECONOMICS Currie, J., Rossin-Slater, M. 2013; 32 (3): 487–503


    A growing literature suggests that stressful events in pregnancy can have negative effects on birth outcomes. Some of the estimates in this literature may be affected by small samples, omitted variables, endogenous mobility in response to disasters, and errors in the measurement of gestation, as well as by a mechanical correlation between longer gestation and the probability of having been exposed. We use millions of individual birth records to examine the effects of exposure to hurricanes during pregnancy, and the sensitivity of the estimates to these econometric problems. We find that exposure to a hurricane during pregnancy increases the probability of abnormal conditions of the newborn such as being on a ventilator more than 30min and meconium aspiration syndrome (MAS). Although we are able to reproduce previous estimates of effects on birth weight and gestation, our results suggest that measured effects of stressful events on these outcomes are sensitive to specification and it is preferable to use more sensitive indicators of newborn health.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jhealeco.2013.01.004

    View details for Web of Science ID 000319238100001

    View details for PubMedID 23500506

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3649867

  • The Effects of California's Paid Family Leave Program on Mothers' Leave-Taking and Subsequent Labor Market Outcomes JOURNAL OF POLICY ANALYSIS AND MANAGEMENT Rossin-Slater, M., Ruhm, C. J., Waldfogel, J. 2013; 32 (2): 224-+


    This analysis uses March Current Population Survey data from 1999 to 2010 and a differences-in-differences approach to examine how California's first in the nation paid family leave (PFL) program affected leave-taking by mothers following childbirth, as well as subsequent labor market outcomes. We obtain robust evidence that the California program doubled the overall use of maternity leave, increasing it from an average of three to six weeks for new mothers--with some evidence of particularly large growth for less advantaged groups. We also provide evidence that PFL increased the usual weekly work hours of employed mothers of 1- to 3-year-old children by 10 to 17 percent and that their wage incomes may have risen by a similar amount.

    View details for DOI 10.1002/pam.21676

    View details for Web of Science ID 000316572600002

    View details for PubMedID 23547324

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3701456

  • The effects of maternity leave on children's birth and infant health outcomes in the United States JOURNAL OF HEALTH ECONOMICS Rossin, M. 2011; 30 (2): 221–39


    This paper evaluates the impacts of unpaid maternity leave provisions of the 1993 Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) on children's birth and infant health outcomes in the United States. My identification strategy uses variation in pre-FMLA maternity leave policies across states and variation in which firms are covered by FMLA provisions. Using Vital Statistics data and difference-in-difference-in-difference methodology, I find that maternity leave led to small increases in birth weight, decreases in the likelihood of a premature birth, and substantial decreases in infant mortality for children of college-educated and married mothers, who were most able to take advantage of unpaid leave. My results are robust to the inclusion of numerous controls for maternal, child, and county characteristics, state, year, and month fixed effects, and state-year interactions, as well as across several different specifications.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jhealeco.2011.01.005

    View details for Web of Science ID 000290885400001

    View details for PubMedID 21300415

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3698961