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      Outcomes and Resource Utilization in ST‐Elevation Myocardial Infarction in the United States: Evidence for Socioeconomic Disparities

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          Socioeconomic status (SES) as reflected by residential zip code status may detrimentally influence a number of prehospital clinical, access‐related, and transport variables that influence outcome for patients with ST‐elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) undergoing reperfusion. We sought to analyze the impact of SES on in‐hospital mortality, timely reperfusion, and cost of hospitalization following STEMI.

          Methods and Results

          We used the 2003–2011 Nationwide Inpatient Sample database for this analysis. All hospital admissions with a principal diagnosis of STEMI were identified using ICD‐9 codes. SES was assessed using median household income of the residential zip code for each patient. There was a significantly higher mortality among the lowest SES quartile as compared to the highest quartile (OR [95% CI]: 1.11 [1.06 to 1.17]). Similarly, there was a highly significant trend indicating a progressively reduced timely reperfusion among patients from lower quartiles (OR [95% CI]: 0.80 [0.74 to 0.88]). In addition, there was a lower utilization of circulatory support devices among patients from lower as compared to higher zip code quartiles (OR [95% CI]: 0.85 [0.75 to 0.97]). Furthermore, the mean adjusted cost of hospitalization among quartiles 2, 3, and 4, as compared to quartile 1 was significantly higher by $913, $2140, and $4070, respectively.


          Patients residing in zip codes with lower SES had increased in‐hospital mortality and decreased timely reperfusion following STEMI as compared to patients residing in higher SES zip codes. The cost of hospitalization of patients from higher SES quartiles was significantly higher than those from lower quartiles.

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          Most cited references 32

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          Comorbidity measures for use with administrative data.

          This study attempts to develop a comprehensive set of comorbidity measures for use with large administrative inpatient datasets. The study involved clinical and empirical review of comorbidity measures, development of a framework that attempts to segregate comorbidities from other aspects of the patient's condition, development of a comorbidity algorithm, and testing on heterogeneous and homogeneous patient groups. Data were drawn from all adult, nonmaternal inpatients from 438 acute care hospitals in California in 1992 (n = 1,779,167). Outcome measures were those commonly available in administrative data: length of stay, hospital charges, and in-hospital death. A comprehensive set of 30 comorbidity measures was developed. The comorbidities were associated with substantial increases in length of stay, hospital charges, and mortality both for heterogeneous and homogeneous disease groups. Several comorbidities are described that are important predictors of outcomes, yet commonly are not measured. These include mental disorders, drug and alcohol abuse, obesity, coagulopathy, weight loss, and fluid and electrolyte disorders. The comorbidities had independent effects on outcomes and probably should not be simplified as an index because they affect outcomes differently among different patient groups. The present method addresses some of the limitations of previous measures. It is based on a comprehensive approach to identifying comorbidities and separates them from the primary reason for hospitalization, resulting in an expanded set of comorbidities that easily is applied without further refinement to administrative data for a wide range of diseases.
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            Overcoming the absence of socioeconomic data in medical records: validation and application of a census-based methodology.

             John Krieger (1992)
            Most US medical records lack socioeconomic data, hindering studies of social gradients in health and ascertainment of whether study samples are representative of the general population. This study assessed the validity of a census-based approach in addressing these problems. Socioeconomic data from 1980 census tracts and block groups were matched to the 1985 membership records of a large prepaid health plan (n = 1.9 million), with the link provided by each individual's residential address. Among a subset of 14,420 Black and White members, comparisons were made of the association of individual, census tract, and census block-group socioeconomic measures with hypertension, height, smoking, and reproductive history. Census-level and individual-level socioeconomic measures were similarly associated with the selected health outcomes. Census data permitted assessing response bias due to missing individual-level socioeconomic data and also contextual effects involving the interaction of individual- and neighborhood-level socioeconomic traits. On the basis of block-group characteristics, health plan members generally were representative of the total population; persons in impoverished neighborhoods, however, were underrepresented. This census-based methodology offers a valid and useful approach to overcoming the absence of socioeconomic data in most US medical records.
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              State of disparities in cardiovascular health in the United States.

              Reducing health disparities remains a major public health challenge in the United States. Having timely access to current data on disparities is important for policy and program development. Accordingly, we assessed the current magnitude of disparities in cardiovascular disease (CVD) and its risk factors in the United States. Using national surveys, we determined CVD and risk factor prevalence and indexes of morbidity, mortality, and overall quality of life in adults > or =18 years of age by race/ethnicity, sex, education level, socioeconomic status, and geographic location. Disparities were common in all risk factors examined. In men, the highest prevalence of obesity (29.2%) was found in Mexican Americans who had completed a high school education. Black women with or without a high school education had a high prevalence of obesity (47.3%). Hypertension prevalence was high among blacks (39.8%) regardless of sex or educational status. Hypercholesterolemia was high among white and Mexican American men and white women in both groups of educational status. Ischemic heart disease and stroke were inversely related to education, income, and poverty status. Hospitalization was greater in men for total heart disease and acute myocardial infarction but greater in women for congestive heart failure and stroke. Among Medicare enrollees, congestive heart failure hospitalization was higher in blacks, Hispanics, and American Indians/Alaska Natives than among whites, and stroke hospitalization was highest in blacks. Hospitalizations for congestive heart failure and stroke were highest in the southeastern United States. Life expectancy remains higher in women than men and higher in whites than blacks by approximately 5 years. CVD mortality at all ages tended to be highest in blacks. Disparities in CVD and related risk factors remain pervasive. The data presented here can be invaluable for policy development and in the planning, implementation, and evaluation of interventions designed to eliminate health disparities.

                Author and article information

                J Am Heart Assoc
                J Am Heart Assoc
                Journal of the American Heart Association: Cardiovascular and Cerebrovascular Disease
                Blackwell Publishing Ltd
                December 2014
                16 November 2014
                : 3
                : 6
                [1 ]Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH (S.A., W.A.J., V.M.)
                [2 ]Department of Internal Medicine, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH (A.G., A.P.)
                Author notes
                Correspondence to: Venu Menon, MD, Coronary Intensive Care Unit, Cleveland Clinic Foundation, 9500 Euclid Avenue, Desk J 1‐5, Cleveland, OH 44195. E‐mail: menonv@
                © 2014 The Authors. Published on behalf of the American Heart Association, Inc., by Wiley Blackwell.

                This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution‐NonCommercial License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited and is not used for commercial purposes.

                Original Research

                Cardiovascular Medicine

                zip code, acute myocardial infarction, mortality, socioeconomic status, stemi


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