Policy Effect of the Public Health Clinic Closure and Consolidation Policies on All the Preventative Practices Following the Affordable Care Implementation in Louisiana

Anita Feist


The purpose of this study is to examine the policy effect of the public health clinic closure and consolidation policies on public health preventive practices in Louisiana. It is observed in the literature that many governments’ efforts towards the healthcare market has being failing across different political administrations. This is because the current health care reform, public health clinics closures and policy consolidations following the implementation of the affordable care act seems to be disappointing in the state of Louisiana. Currently, many parishes, are battling with low health care professional’s availability, and high prevalence of poor health outcomes (i.e. high spread of STDs, high cancer spread, low accessibility to healthcare, and several communicable diseases) making all the public health interventions programs or initiatives look bad in the face of the policy reforms. However, it is not clear whether the policy consolidation and public health clinics closures are the causal factors to the high spread of diseases and health disparities across the parishes. As a result, this particular study used paired t-test and secondary source of data from the Department of Health and Hospitals and Integrated Public Use Microdata Series USA (IPUMS-USA) spanning from 2008 to 2019 to examine the problem. The study finds that the average Gonorrhea infection rate, and P&S Syphilis infection rate between 2014 and 2019 is greater than the average infection rate before the closure of the public health clinics (2008 and 2013). Above all, the study establishes that there is a strong evidence of significant difference in the following: (a) access to healthcare, (b) Sexually-Transmitted Disease (STD) Screening preventative practices, and (c) the participation of Breast Cancer Screening preventative practices resulting from the different periods of policy implementation in relation to public health clinic closures. Therefore, the study recommends that all the closures of the public health clinics needs to be reopen to ensure a greater access to healthcare and healthy population.

Keywords: Healthcare, ACA, Clinic, Policy, healthcare, Preventive, Screening, and STDs.

DOI: 10.7176/PPAR/10-11-05

Publication date: November 30th 2020


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ISSN (Paper)2224-5731 ISSN (Online)2225-0972

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