Pediatric Oral Health Services in Medicaid Managed Care and Fee for Service

Objectives

In 2008, Florida‘s Medicaid program began reimbursing medical providers for preventive oral health services (POHS) delivered to children aged 6 months to 42 months. We examine whether Medicaid comprehensive managed care (CMC) and fee for service (FFS) had different rates of POHS during pediatric medical visits.

Study Design

Observational study using claims data (2009-2012).

Methods

Using repeated cross-sections of 2009-2012 Florida Medicaid data for children 3.5 years or younger, we examined pediatric medical visits. We estimated a weighted logistic regression model to compare POHS rates among visits reimbursed by CMC and FFS Medicaid. The model controlled for FFS (vs CMC), years Florida had a policy allowing POHS in medical settings, an interaction between these 2 variables, and additional child- and county-level characteristics. Results are presented as regression-adjusted predictions.

Results

Among 1,765,365 weighted well-child medical visits in Florida, POHS were included in 8.33% of CMC-reimbursed visits and 9.67% of FFS-reimbursed visits. Compared with FFS, CMC-reimbursed visits had a nonsignificant 1.29-percentage-point lower adjusted probability of including POHS (P=.25). When examining differences over time, although the POHS rate was 2.72 percentage points lower for CMC-reimbursed visits after 3 years of policy enactment (P=.03), rates were similar overall and increased over time.

Conclusions

POHS rates among pediatric medical visits in Florida were similar for visits paid via FFS and CMC, with low rates that increased modestly over time. Our findings are important because more children continue to be enrolled in Medicaid CMC.

Research conducted by

This report is part of the RAND external publication series. Many RAND studies are published in peer-reviewed scholarly journals, as chapters in commercial books, or as documents published by other organizations.

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