Prostate Cancer Screening in Early Medicaid Expansion States

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Abstract

Purpose

The PPACA (Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act) of 2010 included a provision to expand Medicaid by 2014. Six states and jurisdictions elected to expand Medicaid early before 2012. This provided a natural experiment to test the association between expanded insurance coverage and preventive service utilization, including prostate cancer screening.

Materials and Methods

Using the 2012 and 2014 BRFSS (Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System) surveys we identified men 40 to 64 years old who reported prostate specific antigen testing in the preceding 12 months. Sociodemographic and access to care variables were extracted. Income was stratified by the relationship to Medicaid eligibility and the federal poverty level (less than 138%, 138% to 400% and greater than 400%). The weighted prevalence of prostate specific antigen was estimated. Multivariable logistic regression models were used to evaluate factors associated with prostate specific antigen screening. Interaction analysis for Medicaid expansion was performed.

Results

Among 158,103 respondents individuals in nonexpansion states had the highest incidence of prostate specific antigen screening. Nationally screening decreased between 2011 and 2013 (OR 0.87, 95% CI 0.83–0.91). In only early expansion states there was a 3% absolute increase in screening among men in the less than 138% federal poverty level, which was associated with expansion status (pinteraction = 0.04). Increased screening in early expansion states was also seen in men who were 55 to 59 years old, nonHispanic African American, Hispanic, previously married, not high school graduates and current smokers.

Conclusions

Between 2011 and 2013 there were national declines in prostate cancer screening. However, there was significant narrowing of the gap in prostate specific antigen screening between higher and low income men in Medicaid early expansion states. This may reflect improved access to preventive services among populations with historic barriers to care.

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