All ETDs from UAB

Advisory Committee Chair

Meredith Kilgore

Advisory Committee Members

W David Bradford

Nir Menachemi

Michael Morrisey

Document Type


Date of Award


Degree Name by School

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) School of Health Professions


National guidelines recommend treatment of asthma with preventive long term medication, but adherence remains low, resulting in high healthcare utilization among those affected by the chronic disease. The increase in DTCA since the easing of restrictions by the FDA in 1997 has prompted much debate on the effects of the DTCA, with critics arguing that it is harmful while proponents see many benefits such as increased medication adherence. This study examines the impact of DTCA on healthcare utilization and asthma medication use by combining Medicaid administrative data and a national advertising data set on asthma medication from 1999 to 2002. Univariate and multivariate regression analysis were performed to analyze the data. The principal findings of the study showed that DTCA significantly increased the new cases of asthma diagnosis. Healthcare utilization and asthma medication use among Medicaid children was impacted by DTCA. However, there was a differential impact of DTCA on healthcare utilization for Whites and Blacks. Keywords: asthma, Medicaid children, direct to consumer advertising, asthma medication



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