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Disparities in Preventable Hospitalization Among Patients With Alzheimer Diseases

  • Jie Chen
    Correspondence
    Address correspondence to: Jie Chen, PhD, Department of Health Policy and Management, Hospital And Public health interdisciPlinarY research (HAPPY) Lab, School of Public Health, University of Maryland, 3310E School of Public Health Building, 4200 Valley Drive, College Park MD 20742.
    Affiliations
    Department of Health Policy and Management, School of Public Health, University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland

    Hospital And Public health interdisciPlinarY research (HAPPY) Lab, School of Public Health, University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland
    Search for articles by this author
  • Ivy Benjenk
    Affiliations
    Department of Health Policy and Management, School of Public Health, University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland

    Hospital And Public health interdisciPlinarY research (HAPPY) Lab, School of Public Health, University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland
    Search for articles by this author
  • Deanna Barath
    Affiliations
    Department of Health Policy and Management, School of Public Health, University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland

    Hospital And Public health interdisciPlinarY research (HAPPY) Lab, School of Public Health, University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland
    Search for articles by this author
  • Andrew C. Anderson
    Affiliations
    Department of Health Policy & Management, Tulane School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, Tulane University, New Orleans, Louisiana
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  • Charles F. Reynolds III
    Affiliations
    Department of Behavioral and Community Health Sciences, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
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      Introduction

      System-level care coordination strategies can be the most effective to promote continuity of care among people with Alzheimer's disease; however, the evidence is lacking. The objective of this study is to determine whether accountable care organizations are associated with lower rates of potentially preventable hospitalizations for people with Alzheimer's disease and whether hospital accountable care organization affiliation is associated with reduced racial and ethnic disparities in preventable hospitalizations among patients with Alzheimer's disease.

      Methods

      This study employed a cross-sectional study design and used 2015 Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project inpatient claims data from 11 states and the 2015 American Hospital Association Annual Survey. Logistic regression and the Blinder–Oaxaca decomposition method were used.

      Results

      African American patients with Alzheimer's disease were less likely to be hospitalized at accountable care organization‒affiliated hospitals than White patients. Among patients with Alzheimer's disease who were hospitalized, hospital accountable care organization affiliation was associated with lower odds of potentially preventable hospitalizations (OR=0.86, p=0.02; OR=0.66, p<0.001 with propensity score matching) after controlling for patient characteristics, hospital characteristics, and state indicators. Hospital accountable care organization affiliation explained 3.01% (p<0.01) of the disparity in potentially preventable hospitalizations between White and African American patients but could not explain disparities between White and Latinx patients.

      Conclusions

      Evidence suggests that accountable care organizations may be able to improve care coordination for people with Alzheimer's disease and to reduce disparities between Whites and African Americans. Further research is needed to determine whether this benefit can be attributed to accountable care organization formation or whether providers that participate in accountable care organizations tend to provide higher-quality care.
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