State home and community-based services expenditures and unmet care needs in the United States: Has everyone benefitted equally?

TitleState home and community-based services expenditures and unmet care needs in the United States: Has everyone benefitted equally?
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of PublicationForthcoming
AuthorsYang, Y, Lee, A-R, Rapp, T, Chen, R, M Glymour, M, Torres, JM
Journalhealth services research
ISSN Number1475-6773
Keywordsaging/elderly/geriatrics, long term care, Medicaid, Social determinants of health

OBJECTIVE: To test whether the impacts of Medicaid's Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) expenditures have been equitable.

DATA SOURCES AND STUDY SETTING: This is a secondary data analysis. We linked annual data on state-level Medicaid HCBS expenditures with individual data from U.S. Health and Retirement Study (HRS; 2006-2016).

STUDY DESIGN: We evaluated the association between state-level HCBS expenditure quartiles and the risk of experiencing challenges in basic or instrumental activities of daily living (I/ADLs) without assistance (unmet needs for care). We fitted generalized estimating equations (GEE) with a Poisson distribution, log link function, and an unstructured covariance matrix. We controlled demographics, time, and place-based fixed effects and estimated models stratified by race and ethnicity, gender, and urbanicity. We tested the robustness of results with negative controls.

DATA COLLECTION/EXTRACTION METHODS: Our analytic sample included HRS Medicaid beneficiaries, aged 55+, who had difficulty with ≥1 I/ADL (n = 2607 unique respondents contributing 4719 person-wave observations).

PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Among adults with IADL difficulty, higher quartiles of HCBS expenditure (vs. the lowest quartile) were associated with a lower overall prevalence of unmet needs for care (e.g., Prevalence Ratio [PR], Q4 vs. Q1: 0.91, 95% CI: 0.84-0.98). This protective association was concentrated among non-Hispanic white respondents (Q4 vs. Q1: 0.82, 95% CI: 0.73-0.93); estimates were imprecise for Hispanic individuals and largely null for non-Hispanic Black participants. We found no evidence of heterogeneity by gender or urbanicity. Negative control robustness checks indicated that higher quartiles of HCBS expenditure were not associated with (1) the risk of reporting I/ADL difficulty among 55+ Medicaid beneficiaries, and (2) the risk of unmet care needs among non-Medicaid beneficiaries.

CONCLUSION: The returns to higher state-level HCBS expenditures under Medicaid for older adults with I/ADL disability do not appear to have been equitable by race and ethnicity.

Citation Key13715
PubMed ID38148004
Grant ListK00AG068431 / / NIH NIA /
5R01AG069147 / / NIH NIA /