Preconception care utilization: Self-report versus claims-based measures among women with Medicaid

PLOS Glob Public Health. 2023 Nov 30;3(11):e0002592. doi: 10.1371/journal.pgph.0002592. eCollection 2023.


The objective of this study is to compare self-reported preconception care utilization (PCU) among Medicaid-covered births to Medicaid claims. We identified all Medicaid-covered births to women ages 15-45 in 26 states in the year 2012 among the Pregnancy Risk Assessment and Monitoring System (PRAMS) survey and Medicaid Analytic eXtract (MAX) claims data, and identified preconception services in the latter using diagnosis codes published by Health and Human Services' Office of Population Affairs. We fit mixed-effects logistic regression models for the probability of PCU on sociodemographic factors (age, race, and ethnicity) and clinical diagnoses (depression, diabetes, or hypertension), separately for each dataset. Among 652,929 women delivering in MAX, 28.1% received at least one claims-based preconception service while an estimated 23.6% (95% CI 22.1-25.3) of PRAMS respondents reported receiving preconception care. Adjusting for age, chronic diseases, and state, PCU rates in both MAX and PRAMS were higher for non-Hispanic Black versus non-Hispanic White women (OR 1.51, 95% CI 1.49-1.54 and OR 2.05, 95% CI 1.60-2.62, respectively). Adjusting for differences in age, race and ethnicity, and state, PCU rates were higher for patients with diabetes (OR 1.34, 95% CI 1.29-1.40 and OR 1.82, 95% CI 1.16-2.85) or hypertension (OR 1.22, 95% CI 1.18-1.27 and OR 1.85, 95% CI 1.41-2.44). While Hispanic and Asian women were also more likely to report PCU than their non-Hispanic White counterparts (OR 2.07, 95% CI 1.53-2.80 and OR 3.37, 95% CI 2.28-4.98), they were less likely to have received it (OR 0.74, 95% CI 0.73-0.75 and OR 0.65, 95% CI 0.63-0.67). In conclusion, comparing self-report to claims measures of PCU, we found similar trends in the differences between non-Hispanic Black and White women, and between those with vs. without diabetes and hypertension. However, the two data sources differed in trends in other racial/ethnic groups (differences between Hispanic vs. non-Hispanic White women, and between Asian vs. non-Hispanic White women), and in those with vs. without depression. This suggests that while Medicaid claims can be a useful tool for studying preconception care, they may miss certain types of care among some sub-groups of the population or be subject to reporting differences that are hard to surmise. Both data sets have potential benefits and drawbacks as research tools.