Hospitalizations more likely for those with multiple health problems and socioeconomic deprivation, study finds

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Those with multiple illnesses are more likely to be admitted unexpectedly to a hospital, which is compounded if the individual has mental health or economic problems, new research finds.

"Even after accounting for physical multimorbidity and mental health conditions, both of which are more common and occur at younger ages among people in socioeconomically deprived areas, the people who are most socioeconomically disadvantaged were still more likely to have an unplanned admission to hospital," wrote the authors of a study that appeared in the Canadian Medical Association Journal on Feb. 19. The researchers, led by Rupert Payne, Ph.D., of the University of Cambridge, found 10% of the population studied had four or more health conditions, but accounted for 34% of those who had unplanned admissions. Forty-seven percent had potentially preventable admissions.

 

While not involved in the United Kingdom study, Northeastern University researcher Timothy Bickmore, Ph.D., has explored ways relational agents can increase compliance and potentially reduce rehospitalizations, especially for those individuals with low health literacy or at an economic disadvantage. He will present his findings during the 2013 Online Expo technology session on March 20 at 1 p.m. ET.

 

Registration for the online expo sessions is free, and available at McKnights.com/expo2013.

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