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Association of Availability of State Medicaid Coverage for Abortion With Abortion Access in the United States.
McDonnell J, Jarlenski M, Borrero S, Vinekar K. Association of Availability of State Medicaid Coverage for Abortion With Abortion Access in the United States. Obstetrics and gynecology. 2022 Oct 1; 140(4):623-630.
To evaluate the association between state Medicaid coverage for abortion and abortion access measures among U.S. patients.
We analyzed data from the Guttmacher Institute''s 2014 Abortion Patient Survey. Respondents were included if they reported being enrolled in Medicaid, regardless of whether Medicaid covered the abortion. The exposure was self-report of residence in a state where Medicaid can be used to pay for abortion. Access outcomes included more than 14 days'' wait time between decision for abortion and abortion appointment, presentation at more than 10 weeks of gestation when in the first trimester, and travel time more than 60 minutes to the clinic. Multivariable regression was performed to test the association between state Medicaid abortion coverage and dichotomous access outcomes, controlling for patient demographics.
Of 2,579 respondents enrolled in Medicaid who reported state of residence, 1,694 resided in states with Medicaid coverage for abortion and 884 resided in states without Medicaid coverage for abortion. Patients residing in states with Medicaid coverage for abortion had lower odds and rates of waiting more than 14 days between deciding to have an abortion and the appointment (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] 0.70; 95% CI 0.57-0.85, 66.8% vs 74.1%, P < .001), having abortions at more than 10 weeks of gestation when in the first trimester (aOR 0.62; 95% CI 0.49-0.80, 13.6% vs 20.1%, P < .001), and traveling more than 60 minutes to the abortion clinic (aOR 0.63; 95% CI 0.51-0.78, 18.7% vs 27.6%, P < .001) when compared with patients residing in states without Medicaid coverage for abortion.
Availability of state Medicaid coverage for abortion is associated with increased abortion access. Our findings support repealing the Hyde Amendment to promote equitable access to reproductive health care, particularly in the post-Roe era.