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Arizona study one of few to explore health care policy and patient outcomes connected to increased health insurance access

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Rates of hospitalization and amputations among racial and ethnic minority adults with diabetic foot ulcers decreased in states that adopted Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act.

That’s the finding of a new study from the University of Arizona Health Sciences.

Researchers studied more than 115,000 hospitalizations for diabetic foot ulcerations among African American, Asian and Pacific Islander, American Indian or Alaska Native and Hispanic adults age 20 to 64.

They found a disproportionate rate of ulceration and amputation among patients in lower socioeconomic groups.

Researchers compared rates of amputation in areas where Medicaid was expanded prior to 2014 with areas that did not expand.

They found a 35% decrease in hospitalization in areas where Medicaid was expanded.

The study is one of few to explore health care policy and examine patient outcomes connected to increased access to insurance coverage.