Oral Cancer Prevalence, Mortality, and Costs in Medicaid and Commercial Insurance Claims Data

Published 04/26/2022

A new journal article, co-authored by CareQuest Institute researchers, concludes that Medicaid enrollees experienced higher oral cancer and throat cancer incidence, prevalence, and mortality compared with commercially insured adults.  

The article is based on a study that compared all cases (prevalence) and new cases (incidence) of oral and throat cancers among approximately 38,000 Medicaid enrollees and approximately 27,000 individuals with commercial medical insurance. Researchers found that total cancer treatment costs were higher for those with commercial insurance and that cases of oral and throat cancers were lower among adults who had seen a dentist within the prior year. The authors observed that “individuals with infrequent dental visits are often diagnosed with oral cancer at later stages,” which significantly reduces the five-year survival rate. 

Older white males who used tobacco or alcohol or had HIV/AIDS were more likely to be at risk for oral and throat cancers.  

Read the full article in the journal, Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention (open access).

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