Health insurance coverage is associated with access to substance use treatment among individuals with injection drug use: Evidence from a 12-year prospective study

Kenneth A. Feder, Noa Krawczyk, Ramin Mojtabai, Rosa M. Crum, Gregory Kirk, Shruti H. Mehta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objective: Understand how insurance impacts access to services among people who have injected drugs. Methods: 1748 adults who have injected drugs were assessed at twice-annual study visits between 2006 and 2017 (18,869 visits). Use of specialty substance use treatment, receipt of buprenorphine, and having a regular source of medical care were assessed for association with concurrent insurance coverage. Random intercept logistic regression was used to adjust for potential confounders. Results: When participants acquired insurance, they were more likely to report specialty substance use treatment (aOR 2.0, 95% CI 1.6 to 2.5), a buprenorphine prescription (aOR 3.3, 95% CI 2.0 to 5.5), and a regular source of medical care (aOR 6.3, 95% CI 5.1 to 7.8). Conclusion: Insurance is associated with increased use of three important services for individuals who inject drugs. Implications: Expanding insurance may facilitate access to substance use treatment and other needed health services.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)75-81
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Substance Abuse Treatment
Volume96
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2019

Keywords

  • Cohort study
  • Injection drug use
  • Insurance
  • Substance use treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Phychiatric Mental Health
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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