Peer Reviewed Publications
“Medicaid Expansion Associated With Some Improvements in Perinatal Mental Health” with Claire Margerison, Robert Kaestner, Sidra Goldman-Mellor, and Danielle Gartner. Health Affairs, (link).
Poor perinatal mental health is a common pregnancy-related morbidity with potentially serious impacts that extend beyond the individual to their families. A possible contributing factor to poor perinatal mental health is discontinuity in health insurance coveragem which is particularly important among low-income individuals. We examined impacts of Medicad expansion on pre-pregnancy depression screening and self-reported depression and postpartum depressive symptoms and wellbeing among low-income individuals giving birth. Medicaid expansion was associated with a 16% decline in self-reported pre-pregnancy depression but was not associated with postpartum depressive symptoms or wellbeing. Associations between Medicaid expansion and pre-pregnancy mental health measures increased with time since expansion. Expanding health insurance to low-income individuals prior to pregnancy may improve perinatal mental health.