Where Patients Live Matter in Emergency Department Visits in Home Health Care: Rural/Urban Status and Neighborhood Socioeconomic Status

Daniel Jung, Suhang Song, Chenjuan Ma

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

An increasing body of evidence highlights the importance of an individual’s place of residence on their health and functional outcomes. This study is based on Outcome and Assessment Information Set data to assess the differences in emergency department visits among Medicare home health care patients by patients' residence location (rural/urban status and neighborhood socioeconomic status). Compared to urban patients, a disproportionately higher proportion of rural patients lived in more or most disadvantaged neighborhoods (83.9% vs. 41.3%). Using linear probability regression models, patients in rural areas (coefficient =.02, p <.001) and disadvantaged neighborhoods (less disadvantaged: coefficient =.02, p <.001; more disadvantaged: coefficient =.034, p <.001; most disadvantaged: coefficient =.042, p <.001) were more likely to experience emergency department visits. Policymakers should consider utilizing area-based target interventions to mitigate gaps in home health care. Also, given that the majority of rural patients reside in disadvantaged neighborhoods, neighborhood characteristics should be considered in addressing rural–urban disparities and improving home health care.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Applied Gerontology
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2023

Keywords

  • disparities
  • health outcomes
  • home care
  • neighborhoods
  • rural

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gerontology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology

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