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  • 1
    Keywords: MORTALITY ; POPULATION ; prevention ; ELDERLY-PATIENTS ; CRITERIA ; ALL-CAUSE ; OLDER-PEOPLE ; SCREENING TOOL ; ALERT DOCTORS ; POLYPHARMACY
    Abstract: Background Cardiovascular disease is a leading cause of death in older people, and the impact of being exposed or not exposed to preventive cardiovascular medicines is accordingly high. Underutilization of beneficial drugs is common, but prevalence estimates differ across settings, knowledge on predictors is limited, and clinical consequences are rarely investigated. Methods Using data from a prospective population-based cohort study, we assessed the prevalence, determinants, and outcomes of medication underuse based on cardiovascular criteria from Screening Tool To Alert to Right Treatment (START). Results Medication underuse was present in 69.1% of 1454 included participants (mean age 71.1 +/- 6.1 years) and was significantly associated with frailty (odds ratio: 2.11 [95% confidence interval: 1.24-3.63]), body mass index (1.03 [1.01-1.07] per kg/m(2)), and inversely with the number of prescribed drugs (0.84 [0.79-0.88] per drug). Using this information for adjustment in a follow-up evaluation (mean follow-up time 2.24 years) on cardiovascular and competing outcomes, we found no association of medication underuse with cardiovascular events (fatal and non-fatal) (hazard ratio: 1.00 [0.65-1.56]), but observed a significant association of medication underuse with competing deaths from non-cardiovascular causes (2.52 [1.01-6.30]). Conclusion Medication underuse was associated with frailty and adverse non-cardiovascular clinical outcomes. This may suggest that cardiovascular drugs were withheld because of serious co-morbidity or that concurrent illness can preclude benefit from cardiovascular prevention. In the latter case, adapted prescribing criteria should be developed and evaluated in those patients.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 26288222
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  • 2
    Keywords: POPULATION ; COMORBIDITY ; ACCESS ; MENTAL-HEALTH ; MULTIPLE CHRONIC CONDITIONS ; FULLY CONDITIONAL SPECIFICATION ; ILLNESS RATING-SCALE ; SOCIAL-FACTORS ; MEDICAL-CARE ; MULTIMORBIDITY
    Abstract: Background: To analyze the association of health care costs with predisposing, enabling, and need factors, as defined by Andersen's behavioral model of health care utilization, in the German elderly population. Methods: Using a cross-sectional design, cost data of 3,124 participants aged 57-84 years in the 8 year follow up of the ESTHER cohort study were analyzed. Health care utilization in a 3-month period was assessed retrospectively through an interview conducted by trained study physicians at respondents' homes. Unit costs were applied to calculate health care costs from the societal perspective. Socio-demographic and health-related variables were categorized as predisposing, enabling, or need factors as defined by the Andersen model. Multimorbidity was measured by the Cumulative Illness Rating Scale for Geriatrics (CIRS-G). Mental health status was measured by the SF-12 mental component summary (MCS) score. Sector-specific costs were analyzed by means of multiple Tobit regression models. Results: Mean total costs per respondent were 889 [sic] for the 3-month period. The CIRS-G score and the SF-12 MCS score representing the need factor in the Andersen model were consistently associated with total, inpatient, outpatient and nursing costs. Among the predisposing factors, age was positively associated with outpatient costs, nursing costs, and total costs, and the BMI was associated with outpatient costs. Conclusions: Multimorbidity and mental health status, both reflecting the need factor in the Andersen model, were the dominant predictors of health care costs. Predisposing and enabling factors had comparatively little impact on health care costs, possibly due to the characteristics of the German social health insurance system. Overall, the variables used in the Andersen model explained only little of the total variance in health care costs.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 24524754
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