This project will assess the medium-term impact of a large-scale national anti-poverty program on disease and
health risk of mature adults (age 45+) and young adults (age 20-26). We build on a longitudinal randomized
control trial designed to evaluate the impact of an unconditional cash transfer program in a low-income setting.
A fourth wave of data on the study population will include new measures of immune response, disease risk,
and cognitive capacity. Combing these measures with information from previous waves, including the pre-
intervention period, will allow us to map out the biological, behavioral and economic pathways through which a
cash transfer program influences health at two points in the life-cycle.
Specifically, we will exploit the exogenous change in income evoked by random assignment to early-entry
treatment condition to estimate the causal effect of income poverty on immune function, and the role of stress
in mediating this relationship. We will also estimate the causal effect of the cash transfer on a range of
indicators of disease risk. Half the young adults in our sample were exposed to the cash transfer during their
critical adolescence years, allowing us to estimate the impact of the cash on their disease risk. By providing
estimates for both mature and younger adults, we can observe whether the hypothesized relationship vary
across the life-course. The proposal addresses the National Institute of Ageing's Goal B to `better understand
the effects of personal, interpersonal, and societal factors on ageing, including mechanisms through which
these factors exert their effects.' Within Goal B, the proposal responds to objective B1: `Illuminate the pathways
by which social, psychological, economic, and behavioral factors affect health in middle-aged and older adults.'