Postabortion Medicaid Enrollment and the Affordable Care Act Medicaid Expansion in Oregon
Gibbs, S.E.; Harvey, S.M.
Journal of Women's Health 31(1): 55-62
Background: The Affordable Care Act Medicaid expansion had the potential to increase continuity of insurance coverage and remove barriers to accessing health services following an abortion in states where Medicaid pays for abortion. We examined the association of Medicaid expansion with postabortion Medicaid enrollment and described postabortion preventive reproductive services among Medicaid-enrolled women in Oregon. Methods: We used Medicaid claims and enrollment data to identify abortions to women ages 20-44 in 2009-2017 (N = 30,786), classified into a treatment group-those likely to be affected by Medicaid expansion-and a comparison group. Outcomes included Medicaid enrollment (number of months enrolled and any lapse in enrollment) in the 6 and 12 months postabortion. Difference-in-differences analyses were used to compare outcomes preexpansion (2009-2012) and postexpansion (2014-2017) for treatment and comparison groups. Linear regression models were adjusted for age, race/ethnicity, rurality, and month. We described receipt of preventive reproductive services in 0-2 months and in 3-12 months postabortion. Results: Medicaid expansion was associated with enrollment increases of 2.0 and 4.7 months and with declines in any enrollment lapse of 54 and 48 percentage-points over 6 and 12 months postabortion, respectively (p < 0.001). Many who remained enrolled through postabortion received preventive care including contraceptive services (41%) and screening for sexually transmitted infections (23%). Conclusions: Medicaid expansion may increase continuity of insurance coverage for those receiving abortions, and in turn promote access to preventive services that can improve subsequent reproductive health outcomes.