"Virginia was a great place to study this health care delivery transition since it was a regional and national leader in the ADAP transition from direct medication provision to purchasing of ACA insurance. This is a one-state study, but it's applicable to the 19 other states that also haven't expanded Medicaid, as well as to Medicaid-ineligible patients in states where Medicaid has expanded," Dr. Kathleen McManus, a researcher at the University of Virginia School of Medicine's Division of Infectious Diseases and International Health, said.
McManus said researchers looked at the rates of virologic suppression, the most critical outcome in HIV care, among those enrolled in Affordable Care Act plans and those who received care under the state's AIDS Drug Assistance Program. When patients achieve virologic suppression, they have little or no virus detectable in their blood, which benefits the patient and helps public health by preventing transmission of the disease. More than 85 percent of patients with Affordable Care Act insurance were found to be in a state of virologic suppression, compared with 78.7 percent of those in ADAP.