Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Penn study finds uninsured more likely to die in hospital ICUs

A study by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Michigan found that uninsured patients in hospital intensive care units get less aggressive care and die more often than patients with private insurance or Medicaid. ICUs, uninsures, health care quality, patient safety

Penn study finds uninsured more likely to die in hospital ICUs

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Americans without insurance tend to wait longer before seeking care and often rely on hospital emergency rooms for routine care.

But a study by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Michigan found that uninsured patients in hospital intensive care units get less aggressive care and die more often than patients with private insurance or Medicaid.

The researchers used billing data to examine 116,995 patients less than 65 years of age who came to Pennsylvania ICUs over a two-year period . Patients without insurance were 21 percent more likely to die than patients with private insurance, the researchers found.

“We found that even when admitted to the same hospitals, and controlling for other differences between patients, critically ill individuals without insurance are less likely to survive than those with private or Medicaid insurance,” said Sarah M. Lyon, the study’s lead author.

The study was presented at the American Thoracic Society International Conference in New Orleans on Monday, May 17.

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Check Up covers regional health news and a wide array of healthcare topics from pharmaceutical happenings to patient safety. Read about some of our bloggers here.

Portions of this blog may also be found in the Inquirer's Sunday Health Section.

Michael R. Cohen, R.Ph. President, Institute for Safe Medication Practices
Daniel R. Hoffman, Ph.D. President, Pharmaceutical Business Research Associates
Hooman Noorchashm, M.D., Ph.D. Cardiothoracic surgeon in the Philadelphia area
Amy J. Reed, M.D., Ph.D. Anesthesiologist and Surgical Intensivist in the Philadelphia Area
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