Policy Changes and Improvements in Health Insurance Coverage Among MSM: 20 U.S. Cities, 2008–2014

NHBS Study Group, CDC: Behavioral Surveillance Team

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Recent policy changes have improved the ability of gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (MSM) to secure health insurance. We wanted to assess changes over time in self-reported health insurance status among MSM participating in CDC’s National HIV Behavioral Surveillance (NHBS) in 2008, 2011, and 2014. We analyzed NHBS data from sexually active MSM interviewed at venues in 20 U.S. cities. To determine if interview year was associated with health insurance status, we used a Poisson model with robust standard errors. Among included MSM, the overall percentage of MSM with health insurance rose 16 % from 2008 (68 %) to 2014 (79 %) (p value for trend < 0.001). The change in coverage over time was greatest in key demographic segments with lower health insurance coverage all three interview years, by age, education, and income. Corresponding with recent policy changes, health insurance improved among MSM participating in NHBS, with greater improvements in historically underinsured demographic segments. Despite these increases, improved coverage is still needed. Improved access to health insurance could lead to a reduction in health disparities among MSM over time.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)615-618
Number of pages4
JournalAIDS and Behavior
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2017


  • Health disparities
  • Health insurance
  • Men who have sex with men

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Infectious Diseases


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