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UT social work professor Sunha Choi recently published an article in Population Health Management on the effects of Medicaid expansion on low-income individuals’ access to health care.

Sunha Choi
Sunha Choi

Choi and her team analyzed a nationally representative sample of 544,307 adults ages 26 to 64 from all 50 states and Washington, DC. They examined how Medicaid expansion affected insurance access in 2015, the second year of the expansion. Their results indicate substantial increases in health care access between 2012 and 2015 in Medicaid expansion states.

Those who resided in the Medicaid expansion states were more likely to have health insurance, have a usual source of care, and receive a routine checkup, and were less likely to not see a doctor because of cost compared to low-income residents in nonexpansion states.

“This study demonstrated that state-level Medicaid expansion improved health care access among low-income US residents,” said Choi. “Residents in nonexpansion states were disproportionately negatively affected by states’ decision to not expand Medicaid coverage.”

Choi collaborated on the study with Sungkyu Lee at Soongsil Univeristy in Seoul, Korea, and Jason Matejkowski at the University of Kansas. Choi is the Hartford Geriatric Social Work Faculty Scholar in UT’s College of Social Work.


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