Study sees increased healthcare utilization by Medicaid patients in New York City who were evicted from their homes

Eviction notice posted on door.
Getty Images / Vyacheslav Dumchev

With New York State’s eviction moratorium due to expire this month, a new study has found evidence that eviction is bad for one’s health. Evictions drove up healthcare utilization in New York City while disrupting the ability to remain enrolled in Medicaid and access medical services, according to the research.

Coauthored by Sherry Glied, dean of NYU Wagner and professor of public service, the study links New York City eviction records from 2017 to New York State Medicaid claims—with 1,300 dispossessed patients matched to 261,855 non-evicted patients with similar patterns of healthcare usage, demographics, and neighborhoods.

Eviction was found to be associated with 63% higher odds of losing Medicaid coverage, fewer pharmaceutical prescription fills, and lower odds of generating any healthcare spending. However, among patients who generated any spending, average spending was 20% higher for those evicted, such that evicted patients generated more spending on balance.

Increased acute (inpatient), and decreased ambulatory (outpatient) care visits were also seen in the city eviction and statewide Medicaid data.

Published online today (Jan. 12), the study will appear in the February issue of the American Journal of Preventative Medicine.

“Results suggest that eviction both drives increased healthcare spending and disrupts healthcare access,” Glied and her co-authors wrote. “Given previous research that Medicaid expansion lowered eviction rates, eviction and Medicaid disenrollment may operate cyclically, accumulating disadvantage. Preventing evictions may improve access to care and lower Medicaid costs.”

A national eviction moratorium was struck down by the U.S. Supreme Court in August. New York State residents are currently protected from eviction until Jan. 15 only--unless the state legislature extends the moratorium.

The research was conducted under NYU Wagner’s Robert Wood Johnson Foundation-funded Policies for Action Hub, which examines the effects of non-health-related policies on the health of the Medicaid population.

Dean and Professor Glied is available for interview. To speak with her, contact NYU public affairs liaison Robert Polner at Robert.polner(at) or 646.522.3046.

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