NBC News reports: “Conservative policies linked to higher mortality among working-age people, except when it comes to marijuana”

Head shot of Jennifer Karas Montez and Jason Beckfield

A study published in PLOS ONE by our former RWJF Health & Society Scholar Jennifer Karas Montez, PhD, our associate director Jason Beckfield, PhD, and their colleagues has found that “more liberal policies on the environment, gun safety, labor, economic taxes, and tobacco taxes in a state [and more conservative marijuana policies] were associated with lower mortality in that state.”  

USA Today reports: What does the recent drop in life expectancy in the U.S. tell us?

Head shot of Jennifer Karas Montez

During the pandemic in 2020, life expectancy in the U.S. suffered the biggest drop since World War II, declining by 1.5 years with Black and Hispanic populations seeing even larger drops. According to former post-doc fellow Jennifer Karas Montez who is interviewed by USA Today, the downward trend in U.S. life expectancy and the increasing social and economic inequalities that were taking place before the pandemic hit must be addressed.…

Color-coded life expectancy: People in blue states are living longer than people in red

Map of the United State with Red and Blue States

Our former Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health & Society Scholar Jennifer Karas Montez, along with our associate director Jason Beckfield, and their colleagues have published a study in The Milbank Quarterly that looks at how changes in state policies since the 1970s have impacted life expectancy in the United States. Read about the study in this release… …  on alternet.org … on salon.com   Image: Wikimedia.org

Montez calls for more research on macro-level causes of increased mortality among women in U.S.

Former Harvard RWJF Health & Society Scholar Jennifer Karas Montez, PhD, is co-author on a Commentary in The Lancet that calls for the next generation of studies on US mortality to focus more on macro-level factors, such as disparities across states’ social, economic, and policy environments, rather than just on the symptoms of higher mortality rates, which include suspect opiod prescribing practices and inadequate drug abuse and overdose treatment programs.

Factoring in where women live could provide critical insight into lagging life expectancy of American women

Harvard Pop Center Director Lisa Berkman, PhD, comments in this New York Times piece on the findings of a new study published in SSM – Population Health. Lead author of the study is former Harvard RWJF Health & Society Scholar Jennifer Karas Montez, PhD.

BBC speaks with Jennifer Karas Montez about puzzling rise in mortality for white, middle-aged U.S. women

The BBC speaks with four experts, including Harvard RWJF Health & Society Scholar program alumna Jennifer Karas Montez, PhD, about the rising death rates of white American middle-aged women in this article, including a short video that uses sound to tell the story of this subset of the population.

Harvard RWJF HSS program alumni edit special edition of Social Science & Medicine journal

Harvard RWJF Health & Society Scholar alumni Jennifer Karas Montez, PhD, and Esther Friedman, PhD, are editors of a special issue of Social Science & Medicine entitled “Educational Attainment and Adult Health: Contextualizing Causality.” Montez and Friedman wrote the introduction to the special issue, Pop Center faculty member David Cutler, PhD, is lead author on a study on the protective effect of education for cohorts graduating in bad times, and…

Balanced Research Approach Called For to Explain Declining Life Expectancy of Low-Educated Women

Former Harvard RWJF Scholar Jennifer Karas Montez, PhD, and a colleague have written an editorial, published in the American Journal of Public Health, that challenges researchers to apply a balanced approach, incorporating two criteria, to better understand a complex dilemma: why is life expectancy declining among low-income women?