Drivers of Community-Entry Home Health Care Utilization Among Older Adults.

TitleDrivers of Community-Entry Home Health Care Utilization Among Older Adults.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of PublicationForthcoming
AuthorsBurgdorf, JG, Ritchie, CS, Reckrey, JM, Liu, B, McDonough, C, Ornstein, KA
JournalJournal of the American Medical Directors Association
ISSN Number1538-9375
Keywordscommunity health care, home care, home care agencies, home health care services, Medicare

OBJECTIVES: A growing proportion of Medicare home health (HH) patients are "community-entry," meaning referred to HH without a preceding hospitalization. We sought to identify factors that predict community-entry HH use among older adults to provide foundational information regarding care needs and circumstances that may prompt community-entry HH referral.

DESIGN: Nationally representative cohort study.

SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS: Health and Retirement Study (HRS) respondents who were aged ≥65 years, community-living, and enrolled in Medicare between 2012 and 2018 (n = 11,425 unique individuals providing 27,026 two-year observation periods).

METHODS: HRS data were linked with standardized HH patient assessments. Community-entry HH utilization was defined as incurring one or more HH episode with no preceding hospitalization or institutional post-acute care stay (determined via assessment item indicating institutional care within 14 days of HH admission) within 2 years of HRS interview. Weighted, multivariable logistic regression was used to model community-entry HH use as a function of individual, social support, and community characteristics.

RESULTS: The overall rate of community-entry HH utilization across observation periods was 13.4%. Older adults had higher odds of community-entry HH use if they were Medicaid enrolled [adjusted odds ratio (aOR) = 1.49, P = .001], had fair or poor overall health (aOR = 1.48, P < .001), 3+ activities of daily living limitations (aOR = 1.47, P = .007), and had fallen in the past 2 years (aOR = 1.43, P < .001). Compared with those receiving no caregiver help, individuals were more likely to use community-entry HH if they received family or unpaid help only (aOR = 1.81, P < .001), both family and paid help (aOR = 2.79, P < .001), or paid help only (aOR: 3.46, P < .001).

CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS: Findings indicate that community-entry HH serves a population with long-term care needs and coexisting clinical complexity, making this an important setting to provide skilled care and prevent avoidable health care utilization. Results highlight the need for ongoing monitoring of community-entry HH accessibility as this service is a key component of home-based care for a high-need subpopulation.

Citation Key13618
PubMed ID37931897