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      Access to health care among status Aboriginal people with chronic kidney disease.

      CMAJ : Canadian Medical Association journal = journal de l'Association medicale canadienne

      Aged, Aged, 80 and over, Alberta, epidemiology, Chronic Disease, Creatinine, blood, Delphi Technique, Female, Glomerular Filtration Rate, Health Services Accessibility, Healthcare Disparities, Humans, Indians, North American, statistics & numerical data, Kidney Diseases, Male, Middle Aged, Nephrology, Office Visits, Patient Admission, Registries, Severity of Illness Index

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          Abstract

          Ethnic disparities in access to health care and health outcomes are well documented. It is unclear whether similar differences exist between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people with chronic kidney disease in Canada. We determined whether access to care differed between status Aboriginal people (Aboriginal people registered under the federal Indian Act) and non-Aboriginal people with chronic kidney disease. We identified 106 511 non-Aboriginal and 1182 Aboriginal patients with chronic kidney disease (estimated glomerular filtration rate less than 60 mL/min/1.73 m(2)). We compared outcomes, including hospital admissions, that may have been preventable with appropriate outpatient care (ambulatory-care-sensitive conditions) as well as use of specialist services, including visits to nephrologists and general internists. Aboriginal people were almost twice as likely as non-Aboriginal people to be admitted to hospital for an ambulatory-care-sensitive condition (rate ratio 1.77, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.46-2.13). Aboriginal people with severe chronic kidney disease (estimated glomerular filtration rate < 30 mL/min/1.73 m(2)) were 43% less likely than non-Aboriginal people with severe chronic kidney disease to visit a nephrologist (hazard ratio 0.57, 95% CI 0.39-0.83). There was no difference in the likelihood of visiting a general internist (hazard ratio 1.00, 95% CI 0.83-1.21). Increased rates of hospital admissions for ambulatory-care-sensitive conditions and a reduced likelihood of nephrology visits suggest potential inequities in care among status Aboriginal people with chronic kidney disease. The extent to which this may contribute to the higher rate of kidney failure in this population requires further exploration.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          18981441
          2572655
          10.1503/cmaj.080063

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