Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Hospitalization: Strong link between income inequality and readmission risk, but not mortality

Date:
February 14, 2013
Source:
BMJ-British Medical Journal
Summary:
Income inequality is associated with an increased risk of readmission to hospital, but not mortality, finds a large US study of older patients.

The authors estimate nearly 40,000 extra admissions to hospital as a result of income inequality over the three year study period.

Income inequality is associated with a variety of adverse health outcomes, including higher infant mortality, reduced life expectancy, and poorer self-reported health. But little is known about the possible link between income inequality and outcome after admission to acute care hospitals.

So a team of US researchers examined the association between income inequality and risk of death and readmission within 30 days of discharge from hospital.

They analysed data for US Medicare patients aged 65 years and older, hospitalised over a three year period (1 January 2006 to 31 December 2008) with a principal diagnosis of acute myocardial infarction (heart attack), heart failure, or pneumonia.

Information on income inequality at state level was obtained from the US Census Bureau. US states in the three highest quarters of income inequality were compared with US states in the lowest quarter.

Several other state, hospital and patient level characteristics likely to influence the results were also taken into account.

Mortality analyses included 2.7 million admissions to 4,500 hospitals and readmission analyses included 3.2 million admissions to 4,500 hospitals.

Income inequality was not associated with an increased risk of death within 30 days of admission for patients with acute myocardial infarction, heart failure, or pneumonia. However, for all three conditions, patients exposed to higher levels of inequality had an increased risk of readmission within 30 days of discharge.

This effect, say the authors, would translate to an increased risk of readmission of 1.5% for acute myocardial infarction and heart failure and 1.4% for pneumonia. Over the three year period, they estimate an excess of 7,153 readmissions for acute myocardial infarction, 17,991 for heart failure, and 14,127 for pneumonia.

Further adjustment for individual income and educational achievement did not significantly alter the findings.

The authors are not sure why they found no consistent link between income inequality and mortality, but they suggest that, over 30 days, "readmission is more sensitive to social conditions than is mortality, and that an effect on mortality might have been observed had we extended the period of observation to one year." They also stress that the design of the study may mean that a number of other unmeasured (confounding) factors could explain the results.

And they conclude that further research is needed "to elucidate the mechanisms underlying these observations."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by BMJ-British Medical Journal. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. P. K. Lindenauer, T. Lagu, M. B. Rothberg, J. Avrunin, P. S. Pekow, Y. Wang, H. M. Krumholz. Income inequality and 30 day outcomes after acute myocardial infarction, heart failure, and pneumonia: retrospective cohort study. BMJ, 2013; 346 (feb14 3): f521 DOI: 10.1136/bmj.f521

Cite This Page:

BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Hospitalization: Strong link between income inequality and readmission risk, but not mortality." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 February 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130214194132.htm>.
BMJ-British Medical Journal. (2013, February 14). Hospitalization: Strong link between income inequality and readmission risk, but not mortality. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130214194132.htm
BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Hospitalization: Strong link between income inequality and readmission risk, but not mortality." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130214194132.htm (accessed October 22, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

CDC Revamps Ebola Guidelines After Criticism

CDC Revamps Ebola Guidelines After Criticism

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have issued new protocols for healthcare workers interacting with Ebola patients. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
WHO: Ebola Vaccine Trials to Start a in January

WHO: Ebola Vaccine Trials to Start a in January

AP (Oct. 21, 2014) Tens of thousands of doses of experimental Ebola vaccines could be available for "real-world" testing in West Africa as soon as January as long as they are deemed safe in soon to start trials, the World Health Organization said Tuesday. (Oct. 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) A medical team has for the first time given a man the ability to walk again after transplanting cells from his brain onto his severed spinal cord. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
CDC Issues New Ebola Guidelines for Health Workers

CDC Issues New Ebola Guidelines for Health Workers

Reuters - US Online Video (Oct. 21, 2014) The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has set up new guidelines for health workers taking care of patients infected with Ebola. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins