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Clin Nutr. 2011 Aug;30(4):422-9. doi: 10.1016/j.clnu.2011.02.002. Epub 2011 Mar 13.

Health economic impact of managing patients following a community-based diagnosis of malnutrition in the UK.

Author information

1
Catalyst Health Economics Consultants, Northwood, Middlesex, UK. julian.guest@catalyst-health.co.uk

Abstract

BACKGROUND & AIMS:

To examine the effect of malnutrition on clinical outcomes and healthcare resource use from initial diagnosis by a general practitioner (GP) in the UK.

METHODS:

1000 records of malnourished patients were randomly selected from The Health Improvement Network database and matched with a sample of 996 patients' records with no previous history of malnutrition. Patients' outcomes and resource use were quantified for six months following diagnosis.

RESULTS:

Malnourished patients utilised significantly more healthcare resources (e.g. 18.90 versus 9.12 GP consultations; p < 0.001, and 13% versus 5% were hospitalised; p < 0.05). The six-monthly cost of managing the malnourished and non-malnourished group was £1753 and £750 per patient respectively, generating an incremental cost of care following a diagnosis of malnutrition of £1003 per patient. Thirteen percent and 2% of patients died in the malnourished and non-malnourished group respectively (p < 0.001). Independent predictors of mortality were: malnutrition (OR: 7.70); age (per 10 years) (OR: 10.46); and the Charlson Comorbidity Index Score (per unit score) (OR: 1.24).

CONCLUSION:

The healthcare cost of managing malnourished patients was more than twice that of managing non-malnourished patients, due to increased use of healthcare resources. After adjusting for age and comorbidity, malnutrition remained an independent predictor of mortality.

PMID:
21406315
DOI:
10.1016/j.clnu.2011.02.002
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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