Prev Med. 2021 Apr 27:106584. doi: 10.1016/j.ypmed.2021.106584. Online ahead of print.
Using insurance as a single indicator of healthcare access in examining the association between race/ethnicity and healthcare encounter-based interventions for smoking may not be adequate. In this study, we assessed the role of healthcare access using multifactorial measures in accounting for racial/ethnic disparities in the receipt of provider-patient discussion, defined as either being asked about smoking or advised to quit smoking by providers. We identified adult current smokers from the 2015 National Health Interview Survey. We first conducted a latent class analysis (LCA) to identify the underlying patterns of healthcare access measured by 13 indicators of healthcare access and utilization. We then used a propensity score- based weighting approach to examine racial/ethnic disparities in receiving provider-patient discussions about smoking or quitting in stratified groups by the distinct healthcare access clusters. Out of the 4134 adult current smokers who visited a doctor or a healthcare provider during the past 12 months, 3265 (79.90%) participants were classified as having high healthcare access and 869 (20.10%) participants as having low healthcare access. Compared to non-Hispanic whites, Hispanics had significantly lower odds of being asked about smoking (OR 0.46, 95% CI (0.27-0.77)) and being advised to quit (OR 0.57, 95% CI (0.34-0.97)) in the low access group, but neither association was significant in the high access group. In addition to increasing health insurance coverage, reducing other healthcare access barriers for Hispanics will likely facilitate provider-patient discussion and promote tobacco cessation among Hispanic smokers.