Paper cutouts depicting a house, a family, and a Medicaid umbrella protecting them

Wehby Articles Featured in Health Affairs January Issue


Two articles by George Wehby, senior faculty affiliate in the Health Policy Research Program, showed improved healthcare and education outcomes after Iowa's expansion of Medicaid. The articles were published in the January issue of Health Affairs. Dan Shane, senior research fellow in the Health Policy Research Program, co-authored one of the articles, which is the top feature of the January publication.

The article co-authored by Wehby and Shane, along with Wei Lyu of the University of Iowa College of Public Health, examined racial and ethnic disparities in adult access to dental care, and how Medicaid expansions under the Affordable Care Act affected those disparities. Using data from 2011-18, they found that expansions including extensive dental benefits were associated with narrowed racial and ethnic disparities in dental care visits, and an increase in likelihood of preventive and treatment services among non-Hispanic Black and Hispanic adults, when compared with non-Hispanic White adults. Learn more about their study here.

Wehby's second article, "The Impact of Household Health Insurance Coverage Gains on Children's Achievement in Iowa: Evidence from the ACA," examined the effects of Medicaid expansions on children's academic achievement in Iowa. Data on standardized school tests, examined with differences in uninsurance rates across Iowa before the ACA insurance expansions in 2014, indicated higher reading scores after three years for children born to mothers with a high school education or lower. The findings suggest better well-being and development of children in low-income households. Read more about this study here.