Nevin Manimala Statistics

High health care use prior to elective surgery for osteoarthritis is associated with poor postoperative outcomes: A Canadian population-based cohort study

J Health Serv Res Policy. 2023 Dec 15:13558196231213298. doi: 10.1177/13558196231213298. Online ahead of print.


BACKGROUND: The characterization and influence of preoperative health care use on quality-of-care indicators (e.g., readmissions) has received limited attention in populations with musculoskeletal disorders. The purpose of this study was to characterize preoperative health care use and examine its effect on quality-of-care indicators among patients undergoing elective surgery for osteoarthritis.

METHODS: Data on health care use for 124,750 patients with elective surgery for osteoarthritis in Ontario, Canada, from April 1, 2015 to March 31, 2018 were linked across health administrative databases. Using total health care use one-year previous to surgery, patients were grouped from low to very high users. We used Poisson regression models to estimate rate ratios, while examining the relationship between preoperative health care use and quality-of-care indicators (e.g., extended length of stay, complications, and 90-day hospital readmissions). We controlled for covariates (age, sex, neighborhood income, rural/urban residence, comorbidities, and surgical anatomical site).

RESULTS: We found a statistically significant trend of increasing worse outcomes by health care use gradients that persisted after controlling for patient demographics and comorbidities. Findings were consistent across surgical anatomical sites. Moreover, very high users have relatively large numbers of visits to non-musculoskeletal specialists.

CONCLUSIONS: Our findings highlight that information on patients’ preoperative health care use, together with other risk factors (such as comorbidities), could help decision-making when benchmarking or reimbursing hospitals caring for complex patients undergoing surgery for osteoarthritis.

PMID:38099445 | DOI:10.1177/13558196231213298

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