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Greene L, Maciejewski ML, Grubber J, Smith VA, Blalock DV, Zulman DM. Association between patient-reported social, behavioral, and health factors and emergency department visits in high-risk VA patients. Health services research. 2023 Apr 1; 58(2):383-391.
RESEARCH OBJECTIVE: To identify patient-reported social risk, behavioral, and health factors associated with emergency department (ED) utilization in high-risk Veterans Affairs (VA) patients. DATA SOURCES: Patient survey, VA, Medicare data. STUDY DESIGN: Prospective cohort study using multivariable logistic regression to identify patient-reported factors associated with all-cause and ambulatory care sensitive condition (ACSC)-related ED visits among VA patients at high risk for hospitalization or death. DATA EXTRACTION METHODS: Patient-reported measures derived from a 2018 survey sent to 10,000 VA patients; clinical and demographic characteristics derived from VA data; ED visits derived from VA and Medicare claims. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Among 4680 survey respondents, 52.5% and 16.3% experienced an all-cause or ACSC-related ED visit in the following year, respectively. An ED visit was more likely among individuals with functional status limitations (6.0% points (Confidence Interval [CI] 0.017-0.103)) and transportation barriers (5.2% points [CI 0.005-0.099]). An ACSC-related ED visit was more likely among individuals with functional status limitations (3.2% points [CI 0.003-0.062]) and self-rated poorer health (7.4% points (CI 0.030-0.119) poor; 6.2% points (CI 0.029-0.096) fair; 4.1% points (CI 0.009-0.073) good; compared with excellent/very good). CONCLUSIONS: Patient-reported factors not present in most electronic health records were significantly associated with future ED visits in high-risk VA patients.