Out‐of‐Pocket Healthcare Expenditures of Older Americans with Depression

The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio, United States
Journal of the American Geriatrics Society (Impact Factor: 4.57). 06/2004; 52(5):809-13. DOI: 10.1111/j.1532-5415.2004.52224.x
Source: PubMed


The objective of this study was to estimate mean annual out-of-pocket (OOP) healthcare expenditures of Americans aged 65 and older with self-reported depression and compare these expenditures with the OOP expenditures of older Americans with hypertension, heart disease, diabetes mellitus, and arthritis. Data from the 1999 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey, which employs a nationally representative stratified random sample of households in the United States, were used to estimate mean OOP expenditures for health care during 1999. The data were limited to observations on individuals aged 65 and older living in households in the United States included in the 1999 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey sample (N=2,730). Mean OOP expenditures for older Americans with depression were $1,835 in 1999. Most of the spending ($1,090) was for prescription drugs in this population. For patients with depression, only 8% of total OOP spending was for depression-specific services and treatments. Mean OOP spending was greater for persons with depression than it was for older Americans with hypertension ($1,181) and arthritis ($1,190), whereas OOP spending for depression was similar to spending of older Americans with heart disease ($1,412) and diabetes mellitus ($1,527). Older Americans with depression have high OOP expenditures, with most of this spending for health services and drugs to treat general medical conditions.

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    • "Previous studies have found a strong association between socio demographic characteristics of the patient and comorbidity and OOPE. In addition, service related factors have also been linked to OOPE [17-19]. In order to see if same variables could have an effect in our population study, OOPE was modelled as a function of the following variables: sex, age, activities of daily living (ADL) at admission, comorbidity, acute illness severity, cognitive status, and hospital length of stay. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background: The burden of out of pocket spending for the Mexican population is high compared to other countries. Even patients insured by social security institutions have to face the cost of health goods, services or nonmedical expenses related to their illness. Primary caregivers, in addition, experience losses in productivity by taking up responsibilities in care giving activities. This situation represents a mayor economic burden in an acute care setting for elderly population. There is evidence that specialized geriatric services could represent lower overall costs in these circumstances and could help reduce these burdens.The aim of this study was to investigate economic burden differences in caregivers of elderly patients comparing two acute care services (Geriatric and Internal Medicine). Specifically, economic costs associated with hospitalization of older adults in these two settings by evaluating health care related out of pocket expenditures (OOPE), non-medical OOPE and indirect costs. Methods: A comparative analysis of direct and indirect costs in hospitalised elderly patients (60-year or older) and their primary informal caregivers in two health care settings, using a prospective cohort was performed. Economic burden was measured by out of pocket expenses and indirect costs (productivity lost) due to care giving activities. The analysis included a two-part model, the first one allowing the estimation of the probability of observing any health care related and non-medical OOPE; and the second one, the positive observations or expenditures. Results: A total of 210 subjects were followed during their hospital stay. Of the total number of subjects 95% reported at least one non-medical OOPE, being daily transportation the most common expense. Regarding medical OOPE, medicines were the most common expense, and the mean numbers of days without income were 4.12 days. Both OOPE and indirect costs were significantly different between type of services, with less overall economic burden to the caregivers of elderly hospitalized in the geriatric unit. The final model showed that type of service and satisfaction had the largest coefficients (-0.68 and 0.662 respectively, p<0.001). Conclusions: This study allowed us to identify associated factors of economic burden in elderly hospitalized in acute care units. It opens as well, an issue that should not be overlooked in framing public policies regarding elderly health care.
    Full-text · Article · Feb 2013 · BMC Health Services Research
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