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Does socioeconomic status affect hospital utilization and health outcomes of chronic disease patients?

Jongsay Yong () and Ou Yang
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Jongsay Yong: The University of Melbourne
Ou Yang: The University of Melbourne

The European Journal of Health Economics, 2021, vol. 22, issue 2, No 11, 329-339

Abstract: Abstract This study quantifies the extent socioeconomic status (SES) affects hospital utilization and adverse hospital events of chronic disease patients. After identifying the initial first-year spell of the disease, we examine six outcomes that include measures of utilization and incidence of adverse in-hospital events. Three years of hospital administrative data from the state of Victoria, Australia, are used to extract a sample of 237,743 patients with chronic disease spells. SES is measured using the utilization records of specific health and human services. The study finds that, compared to patients with no disadvantage, SES disadvantaged patients tend to incur higher hospital costs and longer utilization by about 20% and greater incidence of in-hospital adverse outcomes by up to 80% than non-disadvantaged patients. Further analysis shows that hospital adverse outcomes indirectly contribute to about a quarter of the observed difference in hospital costs between SES disadvantaged and non-disadvantaged patients.

Keywords: Socioeconomic status; Hospital utilization; Health outcomes; Chronic diseases (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I14 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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DOI: 10.1007/s10198-020-01255-z

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