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Friday, May 21, 2021

Medicaid Expansion and the Workforce for ASD

The Politics of Autism includes an extensive discussion of insurance and  Medicaid services for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Ryan K. McBain and colleagues have a brief report at the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders titled "Medicaid Expansion and Growth in the Workforce for Autism Spectrum Disorder."  The abstract:

Over 700,000 children throughout the U.S. have received insurance coverage through welcome mat effects of Medicaid expansion, including children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Utilizing health workforce data from the Health Resources and Services Administration, we examined workforce growth (2008–2017) among three types of health providers for children with ASD as a result of Medicaid expansion: child psychiatrists, board-certified behavioral analysts (BCBAs) and pediatricians. We found that state Medicaid expansion was associated with a 9% increase in BCBAs per 100,000 children one year after enactment, a 5% increase in child psychiatrists, and was not associated with growth in pediatricians. Results indicate the importance of new policies that directly address a shortage of providers for children with ASD.

From the article:

ACA Medicaid expansion has extended insurance benefits to millions of Americans. While direct beneficiaries of Medicaid expansion are typically lower-income adults, there is also evidence that over 700,000 children throughout the U.S. have received health insurance coverage through “welcome mat” effects of Medicaid expansion (Hudson & Moriya, 2017). This has been the result of information campaigns about Medicaid eligibility, and many states having adopted a “no wrong door” policy of determining eligibility across programs.

 Hudson, J. L., & Moriya, A. S. (2017). Medicaid expansion for adults had measurable ‘welcome mat’ effects on their children. Health Affairs, 36(9), 1643–1651.