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2014 Grants - Lin P
Nationwide Frequency and Costs of Preventable Hospitalizations in Alzheimer’s Disease
Pei-Jung Lin, Ph.D.
Tufts Medical Center
2014 New Investigator Research Grant
Managing coexisting medical conditions (comorbidities) has been a long-standing challenge in the care of people with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias. Compared to individuals without dementia, people with dementia may be more likely to be hospitalized, have longer hospital stays and incur higher costs for other medical conditions. Some hospital admissions are expected as part of the natural course of treatment, whereas others are considered “potentially avoidable” in that they can be prevented by good outpatient care or earlier intervention (e.g., preventable complications associated with diabetes). Hospital re-admissions and potentially avoidable hospitalizations (PAHs) are very costly events. Previous analysis has shown that, among Medicare patients with PAHs, total Medicare costs were substantially higher for people who also had dementia.
Pei-Jung Lin, Ph.D., and colleagues will examine nationwide frequency and costs of hospital re-admissions and PAHs among Medicare beneficiaries with dementia in 2012 (roughly 5 million individuals), using national data from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. The researchers will also identify people with dementia at high risk for hospital re-admissions and PAHs. These studies will help provide a better understanding of how quality of care relates to hospitalizations among individuals with dementia. The findings will help raise awareness and hopefully lead to increased national commitments to improving care quality in people with dementia. This analysis may also contribute to the design of novel disease management programs for people with dementia that are at high-risk for hospital re-admissions and PAHs.