Association of Implementing an Incentive Metric in the Oregon Medicaid Program with Effective Contraceptive Use

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Importance: Reducing unintended pregnancy is a national public health priority. Incentive metrics are increasingly used by health systems to improve health outcomes and reduce costs, but limited data exist on the association of incentive metrics with contraceptive use. Objective: To evaluate whether an association exists between implementing an incentive metric and effective contraceptive use within the Oregon Medicaid program. Design, Setting, and Participants: In this state-level, claims-based cohort study, a comparative interrupted time series design was used to evaluate whether the implementation of an effective contraceptive use incentive metric on January 1, 2015, was associated with changes in contraceptive use among Oregon Medicaid adult enrollees when compared with commercially insured women. The participants were adult women at risk of pregnancy (18-50 years of age) living in Oregon from January 1, 2012, through December 31, 2017, and enrolled in Medicaid (532337 person-years) or in commercial health insurance (1131738 person-years). Exposure: Implementation of an effective contraceptive use incentive metric as defined using the 2019 Oregon Health Authority specifications. Main Outcomes and Measures: International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision codes; International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems, Tenth Revision codes; and Current Procedural Terminology codes were used to identify contraceptive use. Annual rates of effective contraceptive use were measured through health insurance claims. Results: The final analyses included 532337 Medicaid person-years and 1131738 privately insured person-years. Women enrolled in Medicaid were younger than those with private insurance (47.5% vs 33.2% of women in 2013 younger than 30 years), and approximately 40% of Medicaid enrollees (vs fewer than 10% of women with private insurance) resided in rural locations. Demographic characteristics within each group remained similar before and after the incentive metric was implemented. In the comparative interrupted time series model, relative to the commercially insured comparison group, effective contraceptive use among Medicaid enrollees for all ages combined increased 3.6% (95% CI, 3.1%-4.1%) 1 year after the start of the incentive metric, 7.5% (95% CI, 6.8%-8.2%) at the end of 2 years, and 11.5% (95% CI, 10.5%-12.4%) at the end of 3 years. Prior to the introduction of the incentive, contraceptive use rates among the youngest cohort of Medicaid enrollees (18-24 years of age) were decreasing; following the introduction of the incentive, contraceptive use increased steadily among all enrollees. Among women aged 18 to 24 years, the effective contraceptive use rate increased 16.5 percentage points (95% CI, 14.4-18.6 percentage points) after 3 years. The largest initial increase in contraceptive use was among women enrolled in Medicaid who were 30 to 34 years of age (4.9%; 95% CI, 3.4%-6.3%). Conclusions and Relevance: Implementation of the effective contraceptive use incentive metric was associated with a significant increase in contraceptive use among Medicaid enrollees relative to a commercially insured comparison group. This finding is relevant given national efforts aimed at adopting a similar metric for widespread use.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere2012540
JournalJAMA Network Open
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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