To determine if inequities in access to osteoporosis investigation [dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA) testing] and treatment (bisphosphonate, calcitonin, and/or raloxifene) exist among older women in a region with universal health care coverage.
Community-dwelling women aged 65-89 years residing within 2 regions of Ontario, Canada were randomly sampled. Data were collected by standardized telephone interview. Potential correlates of DXA testing (verified by physician records), and current treatment were grouped by type as: "predisposing characteristics," "enabling resources," or "need factors" based on hypothesized relationships formulated before data collection. Variables associated with each outcome independent of "need factors" identified inequities in the system.
Of the 871 participants (72% response rate), 55% had been tested by DXA and 20% were receiving treatment. Using multiple variable logistic regression to adjust for need factors, significant inequities in access to DXA testing existed by age, health beliefs, education, income, use of preventive health services, region, and provider sex. DXA testing mediated access to treatment; 34% of those having had a DXA were treated compared with 2% of those who did not. Among women with osteoporosis, correctly reporting that their DXA test indicated osteoporosis and higher perceived benefits of taking pharmacological agents for osteoporosis were associated with treatment.
Significant inequities in access to fracture prevention exist in a region with universal health care coverage. Improved access to DXA and better communication to patients of both their DXA results and the benefits of treatment has the potential to reduce the burden of osteoporosis.
This article in the supplement issue on the Performance, Effectiveness, and Costs of Treatment episodes (PERFECT)-project describes the PERFECT AMI (acute myocardial infarction) Database, which is developed to measure the performance of hospitals and hospital districts in Finland. We analyse annual trends and regional differences in performance indicators and whether the utilisation of services and costs of hospital care are related to improvement in survival of AMI patients.
The study population consists of ten annual cohorts (1998-2007) of patients hospitalised for AMI.
Since 1998 the treatment pattern has changed rather radically, the utilisation rate of percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) has increased and coronary procedures have been performed earlier after myocardial infarction. Outcome measured by various measures of mortality has improved considerably. However, trends in the development of the use of services and outcomes are not similar between hospital districts. An increase in cost was positively and statistically significantly related to decrease in mortality, but the effect was not very strong.
There is potential for decreased mortality from actions that do not increase the costs and for enhancing performance in the regions and hospitals with poor performance.
BACKGROUND: Patient satisfaction is a function of several variables addressing reasons why it is important to use methods in which these different factors can be isolated and their importance analysed. OBJECTIVE: In this project, two methods using this approach were used: the 'Quality from the Patient's Perspective' and the 'Quality, Satisfaction, Performance' models. The aim of the present study is to evaluate these two different methods with respect to application, strengths and weaknesses. DESIGN: In the Quality from the Patient's Perspective model, the patient judges the different domains in two dimensions: perceived reality and subjective importance. The Quality, Satisfaction, Performance model uses a multivariate analysis to capture the patient's priorities. Four hundred and sixty forms for each model were distributed to a random sample of patients at the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Karolinska Hospital. MAIN MEASURES: The quality factors 'treatment by the nurse', 'participation', 'information', 'environment' and 'accessibility' were measured. RESULTS: On both forms, 'medical care', 'treatment by the doctor' and 'access to nursing treatment' received high scores in perceived reality' while 'accessibility' and 'participation' received low scores. 'Subjective importance' measured directly and indirectly, respectively, in the two models showed high values for 'medical care' and 'treatment by the doctor'. CONCLUSION: The advantages of the Quality from the Patient's Perspective model are that it has a comprehensive and solid question bank. The Quality, Satisfaction, Performance model's advantage is its immediate usefulness and its clear graphic presentation. An integration and further development of these two approaches may prove useful.
Four randomized Swedish studies on the usefulness of mammography in screening for breast cancer have been published. The results have shown a variable but positive effect of screening in women more than 50 years of age but the effect is questionable before this age. The protocol and end points however differ between the studies and in order to summarize the results of the present studies, an unbiased, blinded end-point committee was created. The results of this study have been published recently. The present communication only concerns the role of autopsy in this study. The deaths of 1367 patients with a diagnosis of breast cancer have been studied. The percentage of autopsy varied from 21 to 74% between the four studies. When autopsy was performed, 58% were found to have died from breast cancer, 13% from other malignancies and the rest from other diseases. In cases with no autopsy, 73% were considered to have died of breast cancer and 9% of other malignancies. Deaths due to other cancers included a surprising number of cancers of the stomach, gallbladder and pancreas, two to three times higher than expected.
Most treatment recommendations for hypertension are based on criteria that consider efficacy, safety and cost. Given the need for long-term use of antihypertensive agents, treatment compliance should also be taken into consideration in the selection process.
The purpose of the present study was to estimate persistence and adherence to antihypertensive agents in a real-life setting.
Persistence and adherence to treatment were estimated using data from the Regie de l'assurance maladie du Quebec.
Data from a random sample of 4561 subjects with a diagnosis of hypertension covered by the Regie de l'assurance maladie du Quebec drug plan and using one of the antihypertensive agents reimbursed by the drug plan for the first time between January 2000 and December 2001 were analyzed. The persistence rate observed after a two-year period with diuretics was significantly lower (52.8%) than with any other classes of antihypertensive agent (P
This study compared surgical patients' (n = 874) and perioperative nurses' (n = 143) perceptions of the quality of perioperative nursing care. The data were collected with a structured questionnaire in five hospital operating departments in Finland. The questionnaire items were divided into five main categories (staff characteristics, nursing activities, preconditions, progress of nursing process and environment); some of these categories were further divided into subcategories. Overall, patients tended to give significantly higher (P
OBJECTIVES: To gain insight into similarities and differences in patient evaluations of quality of primary care across 12 European countries and to correlate patient evaluations with WHO health system performance measures (for example, responsiveness) of these countries. METHODS: Patient evaluations were derived from a series of Quote (QUality of care Through patients' Eyes) instruments designed to measure the quality of primary care. Various research groups provided a total sample of 5133 patients from 12 countries: Belarus, Denmark, Finland, Greece, Ireland, Israel, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, United Kingdom, and Ukraine. Intraclass correlations of 10 Quote items were calculated to measure differences between countries. The world health report 2000 - Health systems: improving performance performance measures in the same countries were correlated with mean Quote scores. FINDINGS: Intra-class correlation coefficients ranged from low to very high, which indicated little variation between countries in some respects (for example, primary care providers have a good understanding of patients' problems in all countries) and large variation in other respects (for example, with respect to prescription of medication and communication between primary care providers). Most correlations between mean Quote scores per country and WHO performance measures were positive. The highest correlation (0.86) was between the primary care provider's understanding of patients' problems and responsiveness according to WHO. CONCLUSIONS: Patient evaluations of the quality of primary care showed large differences across countries and related positively to WHO's performance measures of health care systems.
BACKGROUND AND AIM: During recent years, more radical surgery for thyroid disease, i.e., total instead of subtotal resection, has been evident. Results following this strategy on national levels are scarce. MATERIALS AND METHODS: From 2004 to 2006, 26 Scandinavian Departments registered 3,660 thyroid operations in a database. Risk factors for complications were analyzed with multiple logistic regression. RESULTS: After thyroidectomy, re-bleeding occurred in 2.1% and was associated with older age (OR 1.04; p