Cervical and colorectal cancer screening prevalence before and after Affordable Care Act Medicaid expansion

Nathalie Huguet, Heather Angier, Rebecca Rdesinski, Megan Hoopes, Miguel Marino, Heather Holderness, Jennifer E. DeVoe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Scopus citations


Community health centers (CHCs), which serve socioeconomically disadvantaged patients, experienced an increase in insured visits after the 2014 Affordable Care Act (ACA)coverage options began. Yet, little is known about how cancer screening rates changed post-ACA. Therefore, this study assessed changes in the prevalence of cervical and colorectal cancer screening from pre- to post-ACA in expansion and non-expansion states among patients seen in CHCs. Electronic health record data on 624,601 non-pregnant patients aged 21–64 eligible for cervical or colorectal cancer screening between 1/1/2012 and 12/31/2015 from 203 CHCs were analyzed. We assessed changes in prevalence and screening likelihood among patients, by insurance type and race/ethnicity and compared Medicaid expansion and non-expansion states using difference-in-difference methodology. Female patients had 19% increased odds of receiving cervical cancer screening post- relative to pre-ACA in expansion states [adjusted odds ratio (aOR)= 1.19, 95% confidence interval (CI)= 1.09–1.31]and 23% increased odds in non-expansion states (aOR = 1.23, 95% CI = 1.05–1.46): the greatest increase was among uninsured patients in expansion states (aOR = 1.36, 95% CI = 1.16–1.59)and privately-insured patients in non-expansion states (aOR = 1.43, 95% CI = 1.11–1.84). Colorectal cancer screening prevalence increased from 11% to 18% pre- to post-ACA in expansion states and from 13% to 21% in non-expansion states. For most outcomes, the observed changes were not significantly different between expansion and non-expansion states. Despite increased prevalences of cervical and colorectal cancer screening in both expansion and non-expansion states across all race/ethnicity groups, rates remained suboptimal for this population of socioeconomically disadvantaged patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)91-97
Number of pages7
JournalPreventive medicine
StatePublished - Jul 2019


  • Affordable Care Act
  • Cancer screening
  • Medicaid
  • Primary healthcare
  • Socioeconomic status

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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