Discussion Papers

No.839 Impact of Legislation for Infectious Disease Control: Evidence from HIV Testing in Mali

by Yuya Kudo

March 2022


I examine the impact of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-specific laws criminalizing HIV non-disclosure, exposure, and transmission on women's voluntary testing, using a regression discontinuity design that exploits the enaction timing of such legislation in Mali during a nationally representative household survey. On the day of legislation, the test uptake and the rate of identifying HIV positives declined. The impact was arguably stronger for rural females with media access near the capital. Additionally, self-reported HIV-related discrimination increased on that day. In summary, the law discouraged test uptake among HIV-positive females by reinforcing HIV stigma and/or fear of legal punishment.

Keywords: Communicable diseases, HIV criminalization, public health, stigma, voluntary testing

JEL classification: H51, I12, I18

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