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Wilmington, DE, United States

Edlund M.J.,University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences | Martin B.C.,University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences | Fan M.-Y.,University of Washington | Devries A.,HealthCore Inc. | And 2 more authors.
Drug and Alcohol Dependence | Year: 2010

Objective: To estimate the prevalence of and risk factors for opioid abuse/dependence in long-term users of opioids for chronic pain, including risk factors for opioid abuse/dependence that can potentially be modified to decrease the likelihood of opioid abuse/dependence, and non-modifiable risk factors for opioid abuse/dependence that may be useful for risk stratification when considering prescribing opioids. Methods: We used claims data from two disparate populations, one national, commercially insured population (HealthCore) and one state-based, publicly insured (Arkansas Medicaid). Among users of chronic opioid therapy, we regressed claims-based diagnoses of opioid abuse/dependence on patient characteristics, including physical health, mental health and substance abuse diagnoses, sociodemographic factors, and pharmacological risk factors. Results: Among users of chronic opioid therapy, 3% of both the HealthCore and Arkansas Medicaid samples had a claims-based opioid abuse/dependence diagnosis. There was a strong inverse relationship between age and a diagnosis of opioid abuse/dependence. Mental health and substance use disorders were associated with an increased risk of opioid abuse/dependence. Effects of substance use disorders were especially strong, although mental health disorders were more common. Concerning opioid exposure; lower days supply, lower average doses, and use of Schedule III-IV opioids only, were all associated with lower likelihood of a diagnosis of opioid abuse/dependence. Conclusion: Opioid abuse and dependence are diagnosed in a small minority of patients receiving chronic opioid therapy, but this may under-estimate actual misuse. Characteristics of the patients and of the opioid therapy itself are associated with the risk of abuse and dependence. © 2010 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. Source

Grabner M.,HealthCore Inc.
Obesity Facts | Year: 2012

Objective:This study is a descriptive investigation of trends in BMI in the USA over time, across race/ethnicity, gender, and socioeconomic status (SES) groups, and across different datasets. Methods: The study analyzes micro-level data from three widely used cross-sectional US health datasets: the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), the National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), and the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), from the 1970s to 2008. Consistent race/ethnicity and SES groups are constructed for all datasets. SES is measured by education and income. Focusing on adults aged 20-74 years, the study estimates BMI time trends, distributional shifts, and incremental associations (gradients) with SES. Results: SES-BMI gradients are consistently larger for women than for men, differ across race/ethnicity groups, and are similar across datasets. Trends in mean BMI are comparable across White, Black and Hispanic males, while Hispanic females range between White and Black females. Self-reported BMI in the NHANES differs markedly from self-reports in the NHIS and BRFSS. Conclusion: The NHANES, NHIS, and BRFSS provide similar evidence regarding BMI trends over time and across race/ethnicity, gender, and SES groups. Racial disparities in BMI remain after adjusting for SES and should be studied further. Copyright © 2012 S. Karger GmbH, Freiburg. Source

Insulin pens may help patients reach glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) target levels, but a substantial proportion of patients continue to use insulin vials/syringes. The objective of the current study was to evaluate real-world clinical and economic outcomes of patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) initiating insulin glargine via pen delivery (pen) or vial/syringe (vial) within a large managed-care population in the United States. This retrospective administrative claims study used data on adult, insulin-naïve patients with T2DM treated with ≥ 1 oral antidiabetic or glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonist at baseline. The index date was the earliest pen or vial prescription date. Propensity score matching (1:1) of patients in the pen and vial cohorts was used when comparing 1-year outcomes, including treatment persistence and adherence, HbA1c levels, hypoglycemia rates, and all-cause and diabetes-related health care costs (computed as paid amounts on claims). Patients in the matched cohorts (n = 733 per cohort) were well balanced with regard to demographics (mean age 52 years; 43% women), clinical measures (mean HbA1c level, 9.4%; mean Quan-Modified Charlson Comorbidity Index score, 0.9), and health care utilization at baseline. Following initiation of insulin glargine, pen patients were more persistent (60.6% vs 50.1%; P < 0.001) and adherent (medication possession ratio, 0.73 vs 0.57; P < 0.001), with lower HbA1c levels during follow-up (mean adjusted change, -1.05 vs -0.73; P < 0.001), compared with vial patients. Hypoglycemic events occurred at similar rates across pen and vial cohorts (3.8% vs 5.2%, respectively; P = 0.21). Study drug costs were higher among pen users ($1164 vs $762, respectively; P < 0.001), but this did not translate into higher total all-cause or diabetes-related costs. For patients with diabetes newly initiating insulin glargine, using an insulin pen device was associated with increased therapy persistence and adherence, and lower HbA1c levels relative to vial/syringe, without increasing total all-cause or diabetes-related costs. Source

Placzek H.,University of Massachusetts Medical School | Placzek H.,HealthCore Inc. | Madoff L.,University of Massachusetts Medical School
American Journal of Public Health | Year: 2014

Objectives: We linked hospital discharge and American Community Survey and US Census data to investigate 2009 H1N1 influenza (H1N1)-related outcomes by racial/ethnic groups and socioeconomic status (SES). Methods: We examined the population discharged from any acute care hospital in Massachusetts and calculated rates of intensive care unit (ICU) stay by racial/ethnic and SES groups between April 26 and September 30, 2009. We used logistic regression models to identify predictors of ICU stay. Results: Of 4874 H1N1-related hospitalizations, 526 (11%) were admitted to the ICU. Those in less affluent SES groups had lower risk of ICU stay than the most affluent SES group. Compared with Whites, Hispanics had significantly lower risk of 2009 H1N1-related ICU stay (odds ratio = 0.52; 95% confidence interval = 0.32, 0.86). Only 13% of Whites admitted to the ICU were in the lowest SES group, compared with 63% of Hispanics and 43% of Blacks. Conclusions: To our knowledge, this is the first statewide description of 2009 H1N1 influenza-related ICU stays according to racial/ethnic group and SES in the United States. Future work should investigate evidence related to social determinants of health among racial/ethnic groups to reduce disparities in relation to pandemic influenza. Source

Palli S.R.,HealthCore Inc. | Kamble P.S.,University of Houston | Chen H.,University of Houston | Aparasu R.R.,University of Houston
Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology | Year: 2012

Objective: To examine the persistence of three newly initiated stimulant preparations among Medicaid children and adolescents with attention-deficit/ hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) diagnosis. Methods: A retrospective longitudinal claims analysis was conducted by using Medicaid analytical eXtract data of four states. The study focused on patients between 6 and 19 years of age with ADHD diagnosis and a stimulant prescription from January 2003 to December 2005. Stimulants were grouped into short-acting stimulants (SAS), intermediate-acting stimulants (IAS), and long-acting stimulants (LAS). Persistence was measured by totaling the number of days the patient remained on the index stimulant therapy from the index prescription date provided the refill gap between two consecutive stimulant claims was no more than 30 days. All the stimulant recipients were uniformly followed for 1 year (365 days). Survival time ratios (STR) were calculated by using accelerated failure time models to examine variation in index stimulant persistence for each stimulant class. Results: Among the 46,135 patients with ADHD continuously followed for 1 year, 8,260 were SAS users, 4,314 were IAS users, and 33,561 were LAS users. Children who received IAS medications had 4% shorter persistence (STR, 0.96 [95% confidence interval [CI], 0.93-0.98]) when compared with those who received SAS medications, whereas those who received index LAS medications had 29% longer persistence (STR, 1.29 [95% CI, 1.27-1.32]). Multivariate accelerated failure time models revealed that Blacks and Hispanics had consistently lower persistence than their counterparts. Foster care was positively associated with index stimulant persistence in the three stimulant types. Further, addition of another stimulant and other psychotropic medications significantly improved persistence of index stimulant in all three stimulant classes. Conclusions: LAS had comparatively longer persistence than other stimulants. An understanding of demographic and clinical characteristics that influence treatment continuation can help improve stimulant persistence rates in ADHD. © 2012 Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. Source

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