OBJECTIVES: To describe food allergy (FA)–related service utilization and identify factors associated with guideline-informed care among Medicaid-enrolled US children with FA. STUDY DESIGN: Retrospective cohort study. METHODS: We used the 2012 Medicaid Analytic eXtract files to identify children with an FA diagnosis. FA-related services including outpatient allergist visits, emergency department (ED) visits, epinephrine autoinjector prescription fills, and diagnostic testing were identified. Factors associated with services were assessed using logistic regression. Kaplan-Meier survival curves evaluated the time to guideline-informed care, and proportional hazard models determined associated socioeconomic characteristics. RESULTS: There were 64,276 Medicaid-enrolled children younger than 20 years who had at least 1 claim with an FA diagnosis in 2012. Minority children and those living in a high-poverty county were less likely to have visited an allergist for FA or received diagnostic testing but more likely to have an FA-related ED visit compared with White children and those not living in a high-poverty county. Survival analyses found that of children seen for FA-related primary care or an ED visit, rates of allergist follow-up visits were 21% and 17%, respectively, and rates of epinephrine autoinjector prescription fills were 39% and 41%. Significant associations with guideline-informed care were found by race/ethnicity, dense population, and high-poverty counties. CONCLUSIONS: Although guideline-informed FA care includes follow-up with an allergist and epinephrine autoinjector prescription, this study finds low probabilities of timely service utilization after medical visits, as well as socioeconomic disparities in care.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health Policy