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Differences in Healthcare Expenditures, Visits, and Prescriptions by Race for Common Benign Urologic Conditions

      Abstract

      Objective

      To identify differences in healthcare expenditures and utilization by race in patients treated for common benign urologic conditions.

      Materials and Methods

      A retrospective secondary data analysis was conducted of patients with common benign urologic conditions using 2016-2018 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey data. Benign conditions included urolithiasis, cystitis, erectile dysfunction (ED), pelvic organ prolapse (POP), urinary incontinence (UI), and benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). Generalized linear models were used to evaluate the relationship between total healthcare expenditures and utilization and race for each condition. Adjusted analyses accounted for age, sex, number of chronic conditions, poverty status, self-reported health status, marital status, highest degree of educational attainment, and insurance status.

      Results

      The weighted analysis sample consisted of 27,110,416 patients, of whom 80.9% were Non-Hispanic white, 6.9% Non-Hispanic black, and 12.2% other minority races. After adjustment, total healthcare expenditures were significantly lower for Non-Hispanic blacks (incidence rate ratio [IRR] = 0.19, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.06-0.61) and other minority races (IRR = 0.30, 95% CI: 0.10-0.88) compared to Non-Hispanic whites treated for ED. Similarly, compared to Non-Hispanic whites, healthcare expenditures were significantly lower for Non-Hispanic blacks treated for UI (IRR = 0.56, 95% CI: 0.35-0.90).

      Conclusion

      Healthcare expenditures are significantly lower for Non-Hispanic black patients treated for ED and UI in the US Future research is needed to determine if these differences represent an inequality in the delivery of urologic care for patients with these conditions.
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