Department of Medicine, Inova Fairfax Hospital, Center For Liver Disease.
Betty and Guy Beatty Center for Integrated Research, Inova Health System, Falls Church, VA.
To assess the outcomes and resource utilization of chronic hepatitis B (CH-B) among Medicare beneficiaries.
CH-B is highly prevalent among immigrants from endemic areas. Although incidence of CH-B is stable in the United States, CH-B patients have become Medicare eligible.
We used the inpatient and outpatient Medicare database (2005 to 2014). Adult patients with CH-B diagnosis were included. One-year mortality and resource utilization were assessed. Independent associations with resource utilization and mortality were determined using multivariate analysis.
Study cohort included 18,603 Medicare recipients with CH-B. Between 2005 and 2014, number of Medicare beneficiaries with CH-B increased by 4.4% annually. The proportion of beneficiaries with CH-B who were whites decreased while those who were Asians increased (P<0.05). Furthermore, 7.4% of CH-B Medicare cohort experienced decompensated cirrhosis, 2.9% hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and 11.9% 1-year mortality. Although the number of inpatients with CH-B remained stable, the number of outpatient encounters increased. Annual total inpatient charges increased from $66,610 to $94,221 while these charges for outpatient increased from $9257 to $47,863. In multivariate analysis, age [odds ratio (OR), 1.05; 95% confidence interval (CI), 1.04-1.05], male gender [OR, 1.24 (95% CI, 1.12-1.38)], decompensated cirrhosis [OR, 3.02 (95% CI, 2.63-3.48)], HCC [OR, 2.64 (95% CI, 2.10-3.32)], and higher Charlson comorbidity index [OR, 1.24 (95% CI, 1.21-1.27)] were independently associated with increased 1-year mortality. HCC and higher Charlson comorbidity index were also associated with higher inpatient and outpatient charges, and inpatient length of stay (all P<0.001).
CH-B infection has been rising in Medicare population and is responsible for significant mortality and resource utilization.