Demographic and Comorbidity Profile of Opioid-Related Hospitalizations in Mississippi: A Call for State Surveillance
Methods: Mississippi hospital discharge data for 2010-2011 were analyzed with SAS 9.3. We compared proportions of categorical variables with chi-square tests. The unit of analysis was a hospital discharge and we used primary and secondary diagnoses to identify discharges with opioid-related diagnostic codes.
Results: There were 9,781 opioid-related hospitalizations during 2010-11. The state’s two-year average rate was 15 opioid-related hospitalizations per 10,000 residents and the Southeast Public Health District had the highest hospitalization rate (27 per 10,000 persons). The proportion of patients with a diagnosis of opioid substance misuse was highest for Caucasians (83%), females (54%), rural residents (51%), and Medicare beneficiaries (31%). Compared to patients hospitalized for all other causes, however, Caucasians (83% vs. 59%), males (46% vs. 40%), urban residents (49% vs. 44%), and the uninsured (17% vs. 7%) were more likely to be hospitalized with a diagnosis indicating opioid misuse.
The bivariate analyses further revealed that 71% of all patients with an opioid-related diagnosis and 24% of all other patients had a co-existing mental health disorder. Compared to all other hospitalizations, patients hospitalized with a diagnosis of opioid abuse were more likely to have a co-existing diagnosis of chronic non-cancer-related pain (19% vs. 2%), lower back pain (12% vs. 2%), and myalgia (3% vs. 1%); however, these patients were less likely to have a co-existing cancer diagnosis (2% vs. 6%). The above-mentioned differences were statistically significant at p = 0.001.
Conclusion: A disproportionate number of patients with an opioid-related diagnosis were Caucasians, lived in the state’s southeastern region and had mental disorders. These patients also had a high prevalence of non-cancer-related pain diagnoses. In addition to allocating resources to the populations at-risk, these findings can help public health programs and health care systems in their evaluation of the risk/benefit ratio of prescribing opioid substances.
Learning Areas:Clinical medicine applied in public health
Public health or related research
Identify at-risk populations for opioid-related hospitalizations in Mississippi Describe demographics and comorbidity profile of patients with a diagnosis of opioid substance misuse
Keyword(s): Drug Abuse, Medical Care
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am an epidemiologist with the Mississippi State Department of Health specializing in analyzing hospital discharge data. I also have special experience in medical research.
Any relevant financial relationships? No
I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.