Virginia's low-income HIV patients benefit from Affordable Care Act
Kathleen McManus, M.D., from the University of Virginia School of Medicine, chose to directly compare the outcomes of the Affordable Care Act with outcomes from the earlier standard. She found that HIV patients in Virginia experience better outcomes with the healthcare plans in the Affordable Care Act.
This is the first study that has compared the outcomes of the Affordable Care Act with the outcomes from the previous standard of care specifically for HIV patients. The researchers measured rates of virologic suppression, which is the most critical outcome involved in HIV care. The two groups of comparisons involved people using the plans in the Affordable Care Act and patients using Virginia’s AIDS Drug Assistance Care Program (ADAP).
Over 85 percent of HIV patients with the Affordable Care Act insurance had virologic suppression -- when little to no HIV is detectable in the patient’s blood samples -- compared to the 78.7 percent of virologic suppression with ADAP patients.
"Virginia was a great place to study this healthcare delivery transition since it was a regional and national leader in the ADAP transition from direct medication provision to purchasing of ACA insurance,” McManus said. “This is a one-state study, but it's applicable to the 19 other states that also haven't expanded Medicaid, as well as to Medicaid-ineligible patients in states where Medicaid has expanded.”