HCBE Faculty Articles

Title

The Potential for Elimination of Racial-Ethnic Disparities in HIV Treatment Initiation in the Medicaid Population among 14 Southern States

Document Type

Article

Date

4-2014

Publication Title

PLoS One

ISSN or ISBN

1932-6203

Volume

9

Issue

4

First Page

1

Last Page

8

Description

OBJECTIVES:

The purpose of this study was to explore the racial and ethnic disparities in initiation of antiretroviral treatment (ARV treatment or ART) among HIV-infected Medicaid enrollees 18-64 years of age in 14 southern states which have high prevalence of HIV/AIDS and high racial disparities in HIV treatment access and mortality.

METHODS:

We used Medicaid claims data from 2005 to 2007 for a retrospective cohort study. We compared frequency variances of HIV treatment uptake among persons of different racial- ethnic groups using univariate and multivariate methods. The unadjusted odds ratio was estimated through multinomial logistic regression. The multinomial logistic regression model was repeated with adjustment for multiple covariates.

RESULTS:

Of the 23,801 Medicaid enrollees who met criteria for initiation of ARV treatment, only one third (34.6%) received ART consistent with national guideline treatment protocols, and 21.5% received some ARV medication, but with sub-optimal treatment profiles. There was no significant difference in the proportion of people who received ARV treatment between black (35.8%) and non-Hispanic whites (35.7%), but Hispanic/Latino persons (26%) were significantly less likely to receive ARV treatment.

CONCLUSIONS:

Overall ARV treatment levels for all segments of the population are less than optimal. Among the Medicaid population there are no racial HIV treatment disparities between Black and White persons living with HIV, which suggests the potential relevance of Medicaid to currently uninsured populations, and the potential to achieve similar levels of equality within Medicaid for Hispanic/Latino enrollees and other segments of the Medicaid population.

DOI

10.1371/journal.pone.0096148

Peer Reviewed

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